An Examination of Driving Exposure, Habits and Harsh Braking Events in Older Drivers with Bilateral Cataract Using Naturalistic Driving Data
Submission Date: November 15, 2018 Journal
Suggested Citation: Agramunt, S., Meuleners, L., Fraser, M., Chow, K., Ng, J., Raja, V. and Morlet, N. (2018). An Examination of Driving Exposure, Habits and Harsh Braking Events in Older Drivers with Bilateral Cataract Using Naturalistic Driving Data. Journal of the Australasian College of Road Safety, 29(4), 63-71.
The aim of this study was to examine driving exposure, habits and harsh braking events in older drivers with bilateral cataract using naturalistic driving data. Ninety six older drivers aged 55+ years were assessed in the month prior to first eye cataract surgery. Data collection consisted of a researcher administered questionnaire, a cognitive test and visual measures including visual acuity, contrast sensitivity and stereopsis. Participants’ driving exposure, driving habits and harsh braking events were measured using an objective in-vehicle driver monitoring device. A multiple linear regression model was undertaken to examine predictors of driving exposure in older drivers with bilateral cataract. After controlling for potential confounding factors, only binocular contrast sensitivity (p<0.05) and gender (p<0.05) were significantly associated with kilometres travelled in a seven day period. One log unit increase in contrast sensitivity score was associated with an increase of 163 kilometres driven during the study period. Males drove an average of 50 kilometres more per week than women. Only eleven participants experienced a harsh braking event during the driving monitoring period. The study provides a better understanding of the driving exposure, habits and harsh braking events of bilateral cataract patients while waiting for first eye cataract surgery. Contrast sensitivity is an important measure to consider when determining the impact of cataract on driving. Further longitudinal research is required to examine changes in visual measures, driving exposure, habits and harsh braking events after first eye surgery and whether second eye surgery provides additional benefits for driving.