Allen, R. W., Park, G. D., Cook, M. L., & Fiorentino, D. (2007). The effect of driving simulator fidelity on training effectiveness. Proceedings of the Driving Simulator Conference – North America, Iowa City.
The degree of driving simulator fidelity certainly has some effect on its potential training effectiveness. This paper describes post-training accident analysis results for a project that has been previously presented at DSC conferences. Training involved three simulator configurations: 1) an instrumented cab with wide angle projected display; 2) a wide field of view desktop system with a three monitor display; 3) a single monitor, narrow field of view desktop system. Training results have been published previously that show some differences in performance between simulator configurations. Accident results were obtained for the teen drivers trained in this experiment from the Department of Motor Vehicles in the State of California, USA. The accident rate of the simulator trained subjects is compared with published California teen driver accident rates for the general state population and also published data from the Nova Scotia province of Canada. The accident rate of the teen driver subject population trained in the instrumented cab simulator configuration was only one third that of the general teen driver population. The accident rate of teen drivers trained with the desktop wide field of view configuration was 77% of the general teen driver accident rate. The accident rate of the teen drivers trained on the single monitor desk top system was about equal to that of the general population. The paper describes the training regimens and simulator configurations and gives a detailed analysis of the accident data.