- Slides: 53
How Emotions Affect Driving An emotion is a strong feeling. Emotions affect your decision-making skills and ability to assess risk in driving situations. Strong emotions can also block your ability to judge and reason accurately. 106
You can reduce the negative effects of emotions and better manage risks by using courteous driving strategies. When you do this, you empower yourself, as courtesy can influence others’ emotions.
Physical Effects of Emotions Strong emotions can cause changes in your bodily functions. • Your heartbeat speeds up. • Your breathing quickens. • Your digestion slows. • Your muscles tighten. Emotions that affect you negatively prevent you from properly applying the IPDE Process.
The more tasks there are in a given driving situation, the more complex and stressful the situation. Heavy traffic can cause stress and fatigue in drivers.
Anger While Driving You assume that others will drive and act in a safe, responsible manner. You might be tempted to react angrily when you must change your expectations. 107
In normal driving situations, other drivers might interfere with your intended speed or path of travel. They might slow or change lanes improperly. They might fail to yield or to signal a turn or lane change.
• Anger is one of the hardest emotions to control. • Anger can impair all of your driving skills.
Anger may cause aggressive driving or road rage. According to the American Automobile Association (AAA): • aggressive driving is driving without regard for others’ safety • road rage is driving with the intent to harm others
If the driver cannot gain control over his anger in this situation, he might react aggressively.
If you are angry while driving, you might • take risks you would not take if you were calm • miss important clues • force other drivers to stop or swerve abruptly Good drivers never surprise other drivers.
What could you do if you become angry while driving or encounter other drivers who are angry? • Think positively. • Leave punishment to police; your acts may only aggravate the situation. • Model good behavior. Say; “I’m sorry”
What Would You Say? Staying Calm You are riding with a friend in the center lane of a three-lane highway. • A driver behind you starts honking the horn, flashing high-beam lights, and tailgating. • What are two things you could say to help your friend manage the situation and drive safely?
Emotions and the IPDE Process The successful use of the IPDE Process requires total concentration on the driving task. In a high-stress situation, you need even more time to use the IPDE Process.
Spirits might run high after winning a game. How can the driver deal with his or her emotions before driving?
Passengers can help the driver maintain control while driving. Passengers can assist a driver by: • talking about positive events • discouraging the driver from taking reckless actions • complimenting the driver for doing a good job of driving in a difficult situation
Effects on Risk Taking Your emotions have a big influence on the amount of risk you are willing to take. Mature, responsible drivers do not let their emotions cause them to take unnecessary risks. 110
Coping with Emotions High-stress driving situations can cause emotions to surface. To help manage your emotions while driving: 1. Use the IPDE Process to drive in an organized manner. 2. Anticipate emotion-producing situations and adjust your expectations. 3. If you encounter an aggressive driver, do not challenge the driver. 4. Try to adjust your route to avoid irritating traffic situations. 5. Make a special effort to control your emotions if you are tired. Keep courtesy as one of your personal rules of the road.
What effect might you have on the passengers in your car when you stay in control?
lesson 6. 2 PHYSICAL SENSES AND DRIVING Your senses play a vital role in using the IPDE Process. You use your abilities to see, hear, smell, and detect motion to know what is occurring in and around your vehicle. As you drive, your senses help you stay alert of changing situations, and give you a better chance of maintaining control over your vehicle and minimizing your driving risks. 112
Seeing More than 90 percent of the information you gather while driving is received through your eyes. You must be able to clearly and quickly identify closing zones in your intended path of travel.
Your brain directs your eyes to focus on objects in and around your path of travel. Information is sent to your brain and combined with stored information. As a result, you can 1. identify hazards 2. predict conflicts 3. decide to maintain or adjust your speed and position 4. execute your decisions
Visual Acuity The ability to see things clearly is called visual acuity. When driving, you need the ability to see things clearly both near and far away. You may need to read the gauges on your instrument panel in one instant, then identify oncoming traffic in the next.
A person with normal visual acuity—called 20/20 vision— can read 11/32 -inch letters on an eye chart with each eye from 20 feet away. You must pass a visual acuity test in order to obtain a learner’s permit.
Field of Vision Your field of vision is all the area that you can see around you while you are looking straight ahead. While looking straight ahead, most people can see about 90 degrees to each side. There are three types of vision that are part of your field of vision. 113
Central Vision The straight-ahead part of your field of vision is called your central vision. Central vision is a small, 10 -degree cone-shaped area.
Peripheral Vision Surrounding your central vision is peripheral vision. Your peripheral vision is sensitive to light and motion.
Fringe Vision The part of your peripheral vision closest to your central vision is called fringe vision. Your side fringe vision is used to monitor a zone condition after it has been clearly identified in central vision. The upper fringe vision is used to detect changes in the rear mirror. The lower fringe vision is used to monitor reference points for vehicle position.
A narrow field of vision— 140 degrees or less—is called tunnel vision. A driver who has tunnel vision must compensate with more frequent head and eye movements.
Factors That Affect Vision Good vision for driving includes • our ability to perceive colors and depth • knowing our limitations while driving at night, in glare, or at highway speeds 114
Color Vision An inability to distinguish colors is called color blindness. Red, green, and yellow are particularly important colors for drivers.
Depth Perception The ability to judge distance between yourself and other objects is depth perception. When driving, you must judge the distance between your vehicle, and other vehicles and objects. Accurate judgment is more difficult when other vehicles or objects are moving.
Night Vision Some people who see clearly in the daytime have poor night vision. The inability to see well at night is called night blindness.
In city areas, your night vision is limited to the area lit by headlights, streetlights, and other lights. In rural areas, you might be in total darkness except for moonlight and the area lit by your headlights.
At night, you might have difficulty reading signs and roadway markings. Compare these two pictures taken during the day and at night. Notice how little you can see at night.
Glare occurs in the daytime when bright sunlight is reflected off shiny surfaces. The term glare resistance describes the ability to continue seeing when looking at bright lights.
The term glare recovery time describes the time your eyes need to regain clear vision after being affected by glare. 1. Your pupils can take 5– 10 seconds to readjust. 2. At 40 mph, you would travel more than the length of a football field while partially blinded.
Vehicle Speed and Vision At higher speeds, your field of vision is narrowed. At 55 mph, your clear, side-vision area is less than half as wide as at 20 mph. 116
This blur, or speed smear, has an effect much like tunnel vision.
The driving scene can change quickly, and you need to be alert to changes so that you make decisions and act quickly. 1. As a driver, you are responsible for maintaining control and managing any distractions.
Cell Phones Research studies have found that drivers talking on cell phones were four times more likely to be involved in a collision.
See Chart page 118
lesson 6. 3 1. PHYSICAL LIMITATIONS 2. A disability is a diagnosed physical or mental impairment that interferes with or prevents normal activity or achievement in a particular area. 3. Many experienced drivers have learned to respond to different disabilities.
Fatigue 1. Mental or physical work, emotional stress, or loss of sleep can cause fatigue. 1. Fatigue lessens your fitness to perform tasks, including driving. 2. Fatigue dulls your senses and slows both mental and physical processes. 3. If you are fatigued, you will need more time to use the IPDE Process.
1. Fatigue can also cause drowsiness. 1. Drowsy driving is estimated to cause at least 100, 000 collisions each year. 2. If you find that you can’t stop yawning, your eyes keep closing, or you can’t focus or concentrate on the driving task, you shouldn’t be driving.
1. Rest is the only safe remedy for fatigue. 1. If you are tired after work or school, take a break for a few minutes before you drive. 2. Walk, stretch, get a beverage, or snack. 3. Be active—listen to the radio, sing, or talk with your passengers. 4. Stop in a safe, well-lighted place if you feel you can’t drive safely anymore. 5. Lock the vehicle and take a nap.
Effects of Medicines 1. Many medicines have side effects that can interfere with your driving ability and risks. 2. For example, medicine that reduces headache pain or relieves allergies might also cause drowsiness, dizziness, or reduced alertness.
1. If you take medicine, read the label to learn the possible side effects.
Effects of Carbon Monoxide 1. Your vehicle’s exhaust fumes contain carbon monoxide, a colorless, odorless, and tasteless gas. Carbon monoxide is present in all engine exhaust gases.
1. You can sometimes detect carbon monoxide in a vehicle because the gas mixes with other exhaust fumes that do have an odor. 1. Carbon monoxide may be present even without an odor. 2. Small amounts of carbon monoxide can cause drowsiness, headaches, muscular weakness, mental dullness, and nausea. 3. Too much carbon monoxide can cause death.
1. Be alert for the danger of carbon monoxide in heavy traffic and in enclosed areas. 2. Your heater or air conditioner vents might draw in exhaust fumes from the car ahead. 3. Leaving a rear window open might create a slight vacuum that pulls in exhaust fumes. 4. If your vehicle is parked in a garage at home, open the garage door before starting the engine. 5. In stop-and-go traffic, maintain a 3 -second following distance.
Smoking 1. Be aware that smoking while driving is dangerous. 1. Smoking raises the carbon monoxide level and reduces the oxygen level in a person’s blood. 2. Smoke residue accumulates on windows and affects vision. 3. Carbon monoxide from tobacco smoke can affect passengers.
Aging 1. Aging slows reflexes, dulls vision and concentration, can make muscles weaker and inflexible, and reduces depth perception and field of vision. • One in six drivers is over age 65. • Eighty percent of drivers over age 75 take prescription medications. • Failure to yield the right of way is the main factor in collisions involving older drivers. • Drivers over 65 are still involved in fewer collisions per mile driven than those under 30.
safe driving tip 1. Handicapped Parking Space It is illegal to park in handicapped-designated parking spaces unless you have special identification.