Using a Simulator to Assess Driving Ability After Stroke, TBI, and SCIBy Jaffe, David L.; RESNA 26th International Annual Conference 2003,
Publication Date: 2003
Study conducted to investigate the feasibility of a computer-based simulator designed to safely assess the driving performance of veterans following stroke, traumatic brain injury, and spinal cord injury. A driving simulator from Systems Technology, Incorporated called the STI Version 8.16 was used in the study. The system consisted of a 21-inch color monitor for the simulator display, a steering wheel mounted on the base, throttle, and brake pedals, and a DOS-based computer with a monitor and speakers. Specialized software was used to produce visual scenes and auditory driving displays. The graphics in the system included images of other vehicles, pedestrians, intersections, buildings, and scenery. Road courses for three different difficulty levels were scripted to model typical driving environments: (1) around a medical center, (2) in residential areas, and (3) in commercial and freeway settings. Each course was designed to take roughly ten minutes to complete. The simulator recorded the average and standard deviation of lane position, steering wheel rate, road heading, throttle input, speed, and acceleration. Additional data recorded included number of accidents, collisions, pedestrians hit, speed limit violations, number of traffic light stops, and simulation run time. Differences between simulator driving performance between the participants and the control groups were evident in the study. Participants who performed poorly on the simulator were unable to complete the in-car evaluation due to their unsafe driving. The author contends that with the early identification of driving problems, a potentially hazardous in-car assessment could be avoided. Individuals could also be trained on the simulator to improve driving performance.
Published by: Rehabilitation Engineering & Assistive Technology Society of North America (RESNA) (Website:http://www.resna.org)