U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
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Federal Highway Administration Research and Technology
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Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-04-139
Date: December 2005
Enhanced Night Visibility Series, Volume VIII: Phase II—Study 6: Detection of Pavement Markings During Nighttime Driving in Clear Weather
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APPENDIX D—IN-VEHICLE EXPERIMENTER PROTOCOL
Protocol for Enhanced Night Visibility Pavement Markings- In-Vehicle Experimenters
Before we begin, it is required for me to verify that you have a driver's license. Would you please show me your license?
Must be a valid Class A driver's license to proceed with the study. Out of state is fine.
Experimenter read text in italics out loud:
This research is sponsored by the Federal Highway Administration. The purpose is to gather information that will be available to the public, including car manufacturers. The goal is to determine the best vision enhancement systems to help drivers see pavement markings at night. The lights need to also be safe and not cause any discomfort for other drivers on the road.
The study will take place on the Smart Road testing facility. The road will be closed off to all traffic except for experimental vehicles. There will be at most four experimental vehicles on the road at one time including the vehicle you will be in.
During the experiment, I will be in the vehicle with you at all times. I will be responsible for asking you questions during the drive, recording some data, and monitoring the equipment. In addition, I will be able to answer any questions you have during the drive.
You will be exposed to eleven different vision enhancement systems. You will make one lap on the Smart Road for each vision enhancement system. You will be exposed to different pavement markings with each VES. Your job will be to tell the experimenter when you detect the first and the last pavement marking in each section.
Do you have any questions at this time? (Answer questions if needed).
Now I have some paperwork for you to fill out. This first form tells you about the study, what your job is, and any safety risks involved in the study. Please read through the document. If you have any questions, please feel free to ask. If not, please sign and date the paper on the last page.
To complete the W-9, the participant must fill out the following in the box:
The other side of the form is a University Voucher stating they are not being "permanently" employed by our project. Have them print their name on the top of the form.
Follow me and I will go through the vision tests with you.
The results for all three parts must be recorded on the Vision Test Form.
The first test is the Snellen eye chart test.
Go to Turnaround 1 on the road
Take the participant to the rental vehicle and instruct them to drive to the road.
Radio the onroad experimenters that you are ready to begin.
We will ask you to drive four different vehicles. Once the vehicles arrive, you will meet the valet, who will escort you to your next vehicle. You will drive the vehicle down the road at a comfortable speed. Then you will drive up the road at 25 mph. You will need to indicate when you see the first and the last pavement markings in each section. By pavement markings I am referring to the lines down the middle of the road. We have three sections of pavement markings. Each section has a different type of paint, so some may or may not be more visible than other sections. You will press this button (show the button) when you see both the first and the last marking in each section. The sections are separated by segments of black tape. With the tape, the sections look like this.
Show the participant the drawing of the pavement markings. Point out the pavement tape.
Do you have any questions?
The on road experimenter will escort the participants to their first vehicle. In the mean time, you will get into the appropriate vehicle and set up the computer by entering in the participant information and current setup.
Wait while the on road experimenter performs the participant eye height measurement. This will occur once the participant has adjusted the seat to his/her satisfaction. The measurements only occur when the participant is in a vehicle for the first time. Once the on road experimenter is finished, make sure they check the vehicle lights for you. In addition, if you are in the Sedan you will need to adjust the fan down as soon as the vehicle is started. For the practice lap, you will scroll to "Practice" VES in the VES field. When the on road experimenter has completed the measurements, instruct the driver on the following:
We will now have a practice lap to help you get used to driving the vehicle on the Smart Road and using the push buttons. I would like you to drive down the road at a comfortable speed.
Point out the location of the pavement dip cones.First vehicle at the bottom of the hill
Second vehicle at the bottom of the hill
As I explained before, we have three sections of pavement markings. I need you to indicate when you see the first and the last middle line in each section. You will indicate when you see the markings by pressing this button (hand them the button). When you press the button you will hear a beep. So, you will hit the button a total of six times, two times in each section. The first pavement marking section begins as soon as you pull onto the road so you will need to start looking right away. You will need to maintain a speed of 25 miles-per-hour. We are going to drive up the road and practice. Do you have any questions?
*Note that there is space at the bottom of the screen for error messages. Check to make sure that you are not receiving any error messages.
While going up the hill, you need to monitor the following on the computer:
Press the computer space bar again when your body is in line with the last pavement marking. After space bar is pressed, screen will say "Set-up"
During the practice lap, you may need to assist the participant. For example, if they do not indicate the first pavement marking and the marking has passed, you need to say, "Did you see the first marking back there? As soon as you see that, you need to hit the button. You will also be pressing it soon when you see the last one in this section."
In addition, you will need to point out the pavement dip cones and explain:
See the white cones there. Those cones represent indentations in the pavement. We put those cones there so you do not mistake those areas for the end of the pavement markings. So, when you see the white cones, you know the end of the pavement markings are not there.First vehicle at the top of the hill
I would like you to do the same as before by indicating when you see the first and the last pavement marking in each section. You will push the button a total of six times. I need you to drive at 25 miles-per-hour again. Remember to begin looking as soon as you pull onto the road for the first section of markings. Any questions?
This will repeat for all five or six vision enhancement systems. When the valets move the participants between vehicles, you will need to:
Also be alert to the fact that some of the vehicles have automatic locking doors that do not unlock until the vehicle is shut off. In that situation you need to unlock the doors to let the valet inside.Post-Experiment
Topics: research, safety
Keywords: research, safety, Age, Fluorescent Paint, Halogen, Headlamps, High Intensity Discharge, Liquid System, Nighttime, Pavement Marking, Thermoplastic, Ultraviolet, Visibility, Vision Enhancement System
TRT Terms: research, Safety and security, Safety, Transportation safety, Automobile driving at night, Road markings--Evaluation, Automobiles--Lighting--Evaluation, Night visibility, Headlamps