Assessing driver-passenger interactions in a simulated driving environment: A pilot study with teen drivers

Molly E. Tiedeken, Marianne Manire, Dana J. Bonfiglio, Katherine Casty, Jessica H. Mirman, Yi-ching Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The combination of teen drivers and peer passengers presents a unique challenge to roadway safety. Teen drivers, being inexperienced, have not mastered essential driving skills and may not know how to safely manage their passengers. Peer passengers may not know how to help the driver and, as a result, become a source of distraction and a risk-promoting factor. We examined the effect of working relationships (i.e. cooperative, individualistic, and competitive) on driver-passenger social interactions in a driving simulator using observational and self-report methods by experimentally inducing the type of working relationship via a pre-drive social interaction task. The preliminary results indicated that dyads assigned to the cooperation condition produced more ‘helpful’ comments compared to dyads in the competition condition. Initial findings suggest that this type of experimental manipulation may be useful for examining driver-passenger interactions among teens, and those interactions between driver-passenger dyads prior to carry-over into in-vehicle social dynamics. More research is needed to further examine driver-passenger interactions and how differences in these interactions may be associated with safety outcomes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2028-2032
JournalProceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Meeting
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2014


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