|Title||The distracted mind on the wheel: Overall propensity to mind wandering is associated with road crash responsibility.|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2017|
|Authors||Gil-Jardiné C, Née M, Lagarde E, Schooler J, Contrand B, Orriols L, Galera C|
|Keywords||Accidents, Traffic, Adult, attention, Automobile Driving, Female, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Risk Factors, Young Adult|
The role of distractions on attentional lapses that place road users in higher risk of crash remains poorly understood. We aimed to assess the respective impact of (i) mind wandering trait (propensity to mind wander in the everyday life as measured with a set of 4 questions on the proportion of time spent mind wandering in 4 different situations) and (ii) mind wandering state (disturbing thoughts just before the crash) on road crash risk using a comparison between responsible and non-responsible drivers. 954 drivers injured in a road crash were interviewed at the adult emergency department of the Bordeaux university hospital in France (2013-2015). Responsibility for the crash, mind wandering (trait/state), external distraction, alcohol use, psychotropic drug use, and sleep deprivation were evaluated. Based on questionnaire reports, 39% of respondents were classified with a mind wandering trait and 13% reported a disturbing thought just before the crash. While strongly correlated, mind wandering state and trait were independently associated with responsibility for a traffic crash (State: OR = 2.51, 95% CI: 1.64-3.83 and Trait: OR = 1.62, 95% CI: 1.22-2.16 respectively). Self-report of distracting thoughts therefore did not capture the entire risk associated with the propensity of the mind to wander, either because of under-reported thoughts and/or other deleterious mechanisms to be further explored.
|Alternate Journal||PLoS ONE|
|PubMed Central ID||PMC5542598|