Vigilance pp 73-85 | Cite as

Effects of Listening to Car Radio, Experience, and Personality of the Driver on Subsidiary Reaction Time and Heart Rate in a Long-term Driving Task

  • K.-O. Fagerström
  • H.-O. Lisper
Part of the NATO Conference Series book series (NATOCS, volume 3)


An attempt to counteract performance decrement in long-term car driving was undertaken. Twelve subjects drove 4 hours in each of the three conditions, music, talk, and a silent control condition. Reaction time and heart rate were recorded during driving. There was a significant main effect of stimulation on time on task and significant interactions between time on tasks and personality (Eysenck Personality Inventory) and driver’s experience. Extroverts benefited more from stimulation than introverts, and inexperienced subjects benefited more from stimulation than experienced. Heart rate had no functional connection to either of the above-mentioned factors. The results are explained in the framework of an arousal theory and contrasted to a fatigue interpretation.


Reaction Time Performance Decrement Physical Workload Driving Experience Driving Situation 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1977

Authors and Affiliations

  • K.-O. Fagerström
    • 1
  • H.-O. Lisper
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyUniversity of UppsalaUppsalaSweden

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