Road Safety News

Driver emotions under the microscope in conference presentation

Tuesday 31st May 2016

The effects that emotions have on driving performance is the latest topic for discussion at the 2016 National Road Safety Conference.

A presentation with the working title, ‘Understanding cognition and attention’ will be delivered by Dr. Samantha Jamson from the Institute for Transport Studies at the University of Leeds.

The presentation will focus on what makes road users safe and unsafe and will address questions such as ‘what effects do emotions have on our driving performance and safety?’, ‘can we really multitask successfully?’ and ‘what happens when the driving situation becomes demanding?’.

Dr Jamson is a chartered psychologist at the Institute for Transport Studies, University of Leeds and also a member of the Safety and Technology Group, a multidisciplinary team undertaking research in road safety and driver behaviour.

She has worked on a variety of research projects using driving simulators and instrumented cars as evaluation tools. She has also been principal investigator on a range of projects including evaluations of transport telematics applications, road design, and driver impairment.

Earlier this year she worked in partnership with the Telegraph on a survey which looked at the characteristics of drivers to identify those who are most likely to contravene the rules of the road.

Dr Jamson’s research also involves collaboration with national and international policymakers (DfT, Highways England, European Commission) as well as industrial collaboration for both research and PhD supervision.

2016 National Road Safety Conference
The 2016 National Conference is being hosted by Road Safety GB South West Region in Bristol on 15-16 November and  is co-sponsored by Colas, Vysionics and Insure The Box. More than 150 people have already registered to attend the event and 16 companies will participate in the exhibition which runs alongside the conference.

The agenda will include sessions focusing on road user psychology, public health and road safety, and social marketing, social media and engagement.

Click here to register to attend the conference; click here for more information about exhibiting alongside the conference; or for more information contact Sally Bartrum (delegate registration and exhibition) or Nick Rawlings (speakers and agenda) on 01379 650112.


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Drivers emotional states were studied in the states and found to be a significant factor.
Don Muir, Gloucestershire

Agree (1) | Disagree (0)

The type of personal transportation - typically the private car - can give an insight into the emotional make-up and personality of the driver and a clue as to what sort undesirable behavioural traits may be present - ego and a competitive streak being at the top of the list I would think. I don't want to stereotype but I think there are certain makes and styles of vehicles which seem to attract people whose behaviour behind the wheel is not conducive to safe driving.
Hugh Jones, Cheshire

Agree (3) | Disagree (0)

I wonder if they are looking into the effects of frustration and inattention caused by miles and miles of low speed "Managed Motorway" and or "roadworks" and the resultant increase of speed on other parts of the network?
Steve Armstrong, Halifax UK.

Agree (7) | Disagree (3)