Our eyes take in a lot of information from the world, but limitations in brain processing means that we can only pay attention to a small portion of it. As a consequence we often fail to notice important information that is clearly in our field of view because our attention is focused elsewhere. One compelling example of this limitation is known as “attentional blindness”. An excellent example of attentional blindness is illustrated in this video:
Good visual attentional performance is fundamentally important for safe driving. One computer-based test of visual attention has proven to be a very good predictor of crash risk. The test is known as UFOV (for “Useful Field of View”) and measures the area of the visual field that a person can attend to in a single glance. A person with a a reduced UFOV has an increased crash risk because potential hazards are less likely to be noticed. Studies have shown that the UFOV test is more predictive than any other cognitive or visual test and far more predictive than the current visual test given at most DMVs.
UFOV decreases in size with age due to degraded visual processing in the brain. Scientists used to think that declines in brain performance were inevitable and nothing could be done about it. However, in recent years it has been clearly demonstrated that the brain is ‘plastic’ and can change in a positive direction given the right type of stimulation. The computer-based exercises in Drivesharp use our knowledge of brain plasticity to improve visual processing and expand the UFOV.
About 10 hours of Drivesharp training will improve your ability to spot potential hazards, react faster and reduce your risk of accidents. These are not idle claims. Posit Science prides itself on providing scientifically validated products. The technology contained in DriveSharp has been evaluated in multiple government funded clinical studies over more than 20 years. Here are some of the most important results:
- Drivers with poor UFOV performance are twice as likely to get into automobile accidents.
- UFOV performance can be improved substantially by Drivesharp training.
- Training allows drivers to react faster providing an additional 22 feet of stopping distance at 55 mph.
- Training reduces dangerous driving maneuvers by 36%
- Training reduces at-fault crash rates by 50%
- Benefits last a long time with significant improvements still measurable 5 years after training.
Completing the Drivesharp program is one of the best ways to help keep you safe on the road. It is based on sound scientific principles and has been extensively validated in numerous government funded studies. I strongly encourage you to try it out!