Acoustic Situation Awareness and Its Effects on Pedestrian Safety within a Virtual Environment

A major component of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) mission is to focus on pedestrian populations and how to enable safe and efficient mobility for vulnerable road users. However, evidence states that college students have the highest rate of pedestrian accidents. Due to the excessive use of personal listening devices (PLDs), vulnerable road users have begun subjecting themselves to reduced levels of achievable situation awareness resulting in risky street crossings. The ability to be aware of one’s environment is critical during task performance; however, the desire to be self-entertained should not interfere or reduce one’s ability to be situationally aware. The current research seeks to investigate the effects of acoustic situation awareness and the use of PLDs on pedestrian safety by allowing pedestrians to make “safe” vs. “unsafe” street crossing within a simulated virtual environment. The outcomes of the current research will (1) provide information about on-campus vehicle and pedestrian behaviors, (2) provide evidence about the effects of reduced acoustic situation awareness due to the use of personal listening devices, and (3) provide evidence for the utilization of vehicle-to-pedestrian alert systems.


    • English


    • Status: Active
    • Funding: $225430
    • Contract Numbers:


    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Center for Advanced Transportation Mobility

      North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University
      Greensboro, NC  United States  27411

      Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

      University Transportation Centers Program
      Department of Transportation
      Washington, DC  United States  20590
    • Project Managers:

      Patrick, Rafael

    • Performing Organizations:

      Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg

      Virginia Tech Transportation Institute
      3500 Transportation Research Plaza
      Blacksburg, VA  United States  24061
    • Principal Investigators:

      Patrick, Rafael

      Jeon, Myounghoon

    • Start Date: 20200601
    • Expected Completion Date: 20220731
    • Actual Completion Date: 0
    • USDOT Program: University Transportation Centers Program

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01739394
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Center for Advanced Transportation Mobility
    • Contract Numbers: 69A3551747125
    • Files: UTC, RIP
    • Created Date: May 15 2020 5:12PM