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Potential safety impacts of automotive navigation systems

In: Proceedings, Automotive Land Navigation Conference, 18 Jun 1997.

Authors: Paul A. Green

This paper does not purport that navigation systems are safe or unsafe, but attempts to identify potential topics of concern relating to the driver interface. The first section of the paper describes some of the classes of measures by which the safety of navigation systems can be assessed. Of them, eye fixation frequencies and duration, TTC, and TLC have the most promise for pinpointing safety concerns. However, additional work is needed to develop the tools to collect and analyze such measures. Of the navigation tasks that drivers can perform, the primary concern is with destination entry, though information retrieval, route following (with maps), and destination retrieval also deserve attention. A better understanding of the crash-inducing potential of navigation systems may be obtained by consideration of likely crash scenarios, some of which are described. Systematic analyses of crash scenarios involving navigation systems have yet to appear in the literature.