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Office of Planning, Environment, & Realty (HEP)

CEVMS and Driver Visual Behavior Study - Peer reviewed report


1. Report No.
2. Government Accession No. 3. Recipient's Catalog No.
4. Title and Subtitle
Driver Visual Behavior in the Presence of Commercial Electronic Variable Message Signs (CEVMS)
5. Report Date
6. Performing Organization Code
7. Author(s)
William A. Perez, Mary Anne Bertola, Jason F. Kennedy, and John A. Molino
8. Performing Organization Report No.
9. Performing Organization Name and Address
6300 Georgetown Pike
McLean, VA 22101
10. Work Unit No. (TRAIS)
11. Contract or Grant No.
12. Sponsoring Agency Name and Address
Office of Real Estate Services
Federal Highway Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE
Washington, DC 20590
13. Type of Report and Period Covered
14. Sponsoring Agency Code
15. Supplementary Notes
The Contracting Officer's Technical Representatives (COTR) were Christopher Monk and Thomas Granda.
16. Abstract
This study was conducted to investigate the effect of CEVMS on driver visual behavior in a roadway driving environment. An instrumented vehicle with an eye tracking system was used. Roads containing CEVMS, standard billboards, and control areas with no off-premise advertising were selected. Data were collected on arterials and freeways in the day and nighttime. Field studies were conducted in two cities where the same methodology was used but there were differences in the roadway visual environment. The gazes to the road ahead were high across the conditions; however, the CEVMS and billboard conditions resulted in a lower probability of gazes as compared to the control conditions (roadways not containing off-premise advertising) with the exception of arterials in Richmond where none of the conditions differed from each other. Examination of where drivers gazed in the CEVMS and standard billboard conditions showed that gazes away from the road ahead were not primarily to the billboards. Average and maximum fixations to CEVMS and standard billboards were similar across all conditions. However, four long dwell times were found (sequential and multiple fixations) that were greater than 2,000 ms. One was to a CEVMS on a freeway in the day time, two were to the same standard billboard on a freeway once in the day and once at night; and one was to a standard billboard on an arterial at night. In Richmond, the results showed that drivers gazed more at CEVMS than at standard billboards at night; however, in Reading the drivers were equally likely to gaze towards CEVMS or standard billboards in day and night. The results of the study are consistent with research and theory on the control of gaze behavior in natural environments. The demands of the driving task tend to affect the driver's self-regulation of gaze behavior.
17. Key Words
Driver visual behavior, visual environment, billboards, eye tracking system, commercial electronic variable message signs, CEVMS, visual complexity
18. Distribution Statement
No restrictions.
19. Security Classif. (of this report)
20. Security Classif. (of this page)
21. No. of Pages 22. Price
Updated: 9/5/2014
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