Roles of Garment Design and Scene Complexity in the Daytime Conspicuity of High-Visibility Safety Apparel




A naturalistic field study was conducted to assess the effects of garment color, the amount of background material, pedestrian arm motion, scene complexity, and driver age on the daytime conspicuity of personal safety garments. Sixteen drivers drove instrumented vehicles in real traffic, along a fixed 31-km route, in search of pedestrians wearing one of four fluorescent safety garments with retroreflective trim. Distances at which the drivers first reported detecting the pedestrians were recorded. Drivers had no prior knowledge of where along the route pedestrians would be located, nor the number of pedestrians positioned along the route. All of the challenges normally encountered when driving on public roadways were present during the study (other motor vehicles, traffic signals, signs, pedestrians, and bicyclists), thus imposing an ecologically valid level of workload on the drivers.



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