Anne Linja, MS Student in Cognitive and Learning Sciences
Area of focus: Driver Decision Making and XAI
Topic: Rail Safety: Examining the Effect of Driving Experience and Type of Crossing on Safety Concerns.
Project Summary: “Vehicle-train collisions at Highway-Rail Grade Crossings continue to be a safety concern and despite improvements in warnings, many of these incidents are attributed to human error. In some cases, distractions other than railroad traffic, such as nearby highway intersections, may create additional burdens for drivers’ decision making. In this study, we systematically examined safety concerns across two types of Highway-Rail Grade Crossings: non-short storage and short-storage. In a controlled experiment, 48 college-aged drivers viewed a series of driving scene images and identified, rated, and explained up to five safety concerns in each image. Participants reported more safety concerns and higher average severity of those concerns for short-storage rail crossings than non-short storage, but these findings did not depend on rural vs. urban driving experience. Content analysis of the 1,230 safety concerns using chi-squared analysis revealed differences in attention to dynamic safety concerns by rail crossing type, but not to static concerns”.