Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death and injury for teens, accounting annually for over 3000 deaths, 100 times as many injuries, and over 14 billion dollars in associated costs. Speeding contributes to more than 30% of teen driving crashes and is the primary factor in over 20% of serious teen crashes. Among teens, driving too fast for conditions is the primary cause of speed-related accidents, and is the result of lack of experience, rather than intentional risk-taking, aggressive driving or overconfidence. Fortunately, evidence from driving and other domains suggests that it is possible to increase experiential knowledge through training that provides a naturalistic description of the complex situations, represents the conditions of the environment that trigger particular responses, and ensures that the domain itself is adequately represented. Thus, in order to successfully manage speed, teens need to pay attention to relevant visual cues while driving (e.g., visibility, contras), recognize potentially hazardous environmental conditions (e.g., fog) and know the best mitigating strategy to apply (e.g., reduce speed by 10 mph). We will develop an innovative approach using digital video editing and special effects techniques for manipulating vehicle speed in a web-based environment. Combined with web-based interaction, this will be developed into an online educational program to educate teen drivers about speed management.
Four specific aims will be addressed in the Phase I research and development effort: 1) Develop interactive videos demonstrating feasibility in two technical areas, a) the development of a speed adjustment control used to adjust the speed of the vehicle in the video, and b) the use of digital video effects to compositely layer environmental hazards onto videos. 2) Validation that the speed adjustment control and manipulated video are perceptually equivalent to video filmed at the actual speeds using a forced choice experimental paradigm. 3) Develop prototype web-based system for educating teen drivers about appropriate speed management, including two video scenarios with speed adjustment controls, and an interface for submitting responses and receiving feedback about appropriate speeds. 4) Preliminary assessment of the prototype system to guide future development through usability testing and reviews by expert pediatricians and driving instructors. PUBLIC HEALTH IMPACT: Perceptually accurate interactive manipulation of vehicle speed in videos has a range of applications, from driver's education to evaluation of perceptual problems associated with medical conditions, aging, or substance use. The proposed project will develop the first application of this technology, a speed management driver's education system. The prospective Phase II effort will complete the development of the Phase I proof of concept into a fully functional system and complete an evaluation of the effectiveness of this application for improving teen driving safety through improved speed management. Results from the combined Phase I and Phase II effort, disseminated through Driving Academies, will improve teen driving safety.

Public Health Relevance

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death and injury for teens, accounting annually for over 3000 deaths, 100 times as many injuries, and over 14 billion dollars in associated costs;speed is a contributing factor in over 30% of teen driver crashes, but no driver's education exists to target this important issue. In Phase I we will develop a prototype educational product using an innovative training approach with digital video effects for manipulating vehicle speed in a web-based environment, while Phase II will allow us to complete the prototype and evaluate its effectiveness. The proposed application represents a significant shift in training approaches that has the potential, through Phase III dissemination, t significantly enhance driver's education and reduce the number of speed-related teen crashes.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health & Human Development (NICHD)
Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Grants - Phase I (R41)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1-RPHB-R (12))
Program Officer
Mann Koepke, Kathy M
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
Total Cost
Indirect Cost
Parallel Consulting, LLC
United States
Zip Code