By a News Reporter-Staff News Editor at Insurance Weekly News -- Research findings on Risk Management are discussed in a new report. According to news reporting originating in Parkville, Australia, by VerticalNews journalists, research stated, "Drivers are not always aware that they are becoming impaired as a result of sleepiness. Using specific symptoms of sleepiness might assist with recognition of drowsiness related impairment and help drivers judge whether they are safe to drive a vehicle, however this has not been evaluated."
The news reporters obtained a quote from the research from the University of Melbourne, "In this study, 20 healthy volunteer professional drivers completed two randomized sessions in the laboratory - one under 24 h of acute sleep deprivation, and one with alcohol. The Psychomotor Vigilance Task (PVT) and a 30 min simulated driving task (AusEdTM) were performed every 3-4 h in the sleep deprivation session, and at a BAC of 0.00% and 0.05% in the alcohol session, while electroencephalography (EEG) and eye movements were recorded. After each test session, drivers completed the Karolinska Sleepiness Scale (KSS) and the Sleepiness Symptoms Questionnaire (SSQ), which includes eight specific sleepiness and driving performance symptoms. A second baseline session was completed on a separate day by the professional drivers and in an additional 20 non-professional drivers for test-retest reliability. There was moderate test-retest agreement on the SSQ (r = 0.59). Significant correlations were identified between individual Sleepiness symptoms and the KSS score (r values 0.50-0.74, p< 0.01 for all symptoms). The frequency of all SSQ items increased during sleep deprivation (chi(2) values of 28.4-80.2, p< 0.01 for all symptoms) and symptoms were related to increased subjective sleepiness and performance deterioration. The symptoms 'struggling to keep your eyes open', 'difficulty maintaining correct speed', 'reactions were slow' and 'head dropping down' were most closely related to increased alpha and theta activity on EEG (r values 0.49-0.59, p< 0.001) and 'nodding off to sleep' and 'struggling to keep your eyes open' were related to slow eye movements (r values 0.67 and 0.64, p< 0.001). Symptoms related to visual disturbance and impaired driving performance were most accurate at detecting severely impaired driving performance (AUC on ROC curve of 0.86-0.91 for detecting change in lateral lane position greater than the change at a BAC of 0.05%)."
According to the news reporters, the research concluded: "Individual sleepiness symptoms are related to impairment during acute sleep deprivation and might be able to assist drivers in recognizing their own sleepiness and ability to drive safely."
For more information on this research see: Specific sleepiness symptoms are indicators of performance impairment during sleep deprivation. Accident Analysis and Prevention, 2014;62():1-8. Accident Analysis and Prevention can be contacted at: Pergamon-Elsevier Science Ltd, The Boulevard, Langford Lane, Kidlington, Oxford OX5 1GB, England. (Elsevier - www.elsevier.com; Accident Analysis and Prevention - www.elsevier.com/wps/product/cws_home/336)
Our news correspondents report that additional information may be obtained by contacting M.E. Howard, University of Melbourne, Melbourne Sch Psychol Sci, Parkville, Vic 3010, Australia. Additional authors for this research include M.L. Jackson, D. Berlowitz, F. O'Donoghue, P. Swann, J. Westlake, V. Wilkinson and R.J. Pierce.
Keywords for this news article include: Parkville, Risk Management, Australia and New Zealand
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