U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Alternative Lighting, Paint and Retroreflective Material Schemes on First Responder Vehicles

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Awardee County
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2010, $244,817)

Ohio University will use a macroergonomic approach as the basis for human factors research on first responder vehicle visibility and conspicuity recommendations, to include local law enforcement responder vehicles. The research team will perform a comprehensive study of base and contrasting color, retroreflective striping markings, logos, percent retroreflectivity coverage, lighting colors and placement to determine the most effective combination in terms of visibility and conspicuity for first responder vehicles using a research driving simulator. Using a driving simulator to study driver behaviors is a proactive (rather than historically reactive) approach to understanding the driver-related causes of emergency vehicle crashes and can provide information about the drivers actions prior to the crashes and near-crashes that would be otherwise unavailable. In addition, driving simulators can be utilized to test the effectiveness of recommended safety countermeasures without putting any drivers at physical risk. Therefore, the simulator provides the ability to perform both basic behavioral driving research as well as applied research to test the effectiveness of various visibility and conspicuity measures. ca/ncf
Date Created: September 2, 2010