This report presents the synthesised results of reviews of evidence-based research conducted to address the following four research questions:

  1. How does distraction affect safety-related driving performance? Specifically, what does research show about the relationship between cognitive load and safety-related driving performance, including the impact of cognitive load caused by secondary tasks involving interaction with technologies such as (i) mobile phones (handheld or handsfree), (ii) in-built vehicle infotainment systems or (iii) wearable technologies (such as smart watches and smart glasses/googles)?
  2. What does research show about the extent to which driver distraction contributes to road trauma in Australia? What does research show about the impact of driver distraction on crash risk?
  3. What does research show about the physiological symptoms and presentations of driver distraction? Are these able to be accurately identified and measured?
    a) Eye-tracking measures: gaze direction, gaze fixation and percentage of eyelid closure (known as PERCLOS).
    b) Cognitive load and stress response measures: electroencephalogram (EEG, detecting electrical brain activity), galvanic skin response (detecting electrical resistance of the skin to measure response to emotional stress), and heart rate. A widely used non-physiological measure of cognitive load, the Detection Response Task (DRT), was also reviewed.
  4. What guidelines have been developed to reduce any negative impact of human-machine interface (HMI) for in-vehicle technologies on driver performance?