Congruent auditory display and confusion in sound localization: Case of elderly drivers

Amira Ben Jemaa, Giorgio Irato, Andrea Zanela, Alessandra Brescia, Monia Turki, Mériem Jaïdane

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Elderly people may suffer from age-related hearing loss. They often report difficulties to perceive and localize sound sources in noisy environment. How this can be a driving safety issue? This study investigates the effect of hearing impairment, on the driver behavior to localize external sound sources such as emergency vehicles sirens. Subjective tests show that localization confusion appears to be a common problem. Thus, we focus on how to assist the driver, taking into consideration the age-related hearing impairment, to better localize emergency vehicle siren. The hypothesis was based on the stimulus-response compatibility using an effective congruent auditory display, for attentional guidance toward the direction of arrival (DOA) of the external alarm. The proposed approach aims to reduce front-back confusion and enhance the sound localization accuracy of the driver, which is very important for elderly driver, subject to older age cognitive decline. A localization test was performed in lab and in vivo on a test track, where a group of drivers was asked to identify the DOA of an emergency vehicle siren, with and without a dedicated embedded system set up to assist them on sound localization task.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)-
JournalTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2017


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Automotive Engineering
  • Transportation
  • Applied Psychology

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