Evaluation of the actual sitting position of drivers of passenger vehicles
Czech University of Life Sciences, Faculty of Engineering, Department of Technological Equipment of Building, Kamýcká 129, CZ165 21 Prague 6, Czech Republic
This paper is concerned with comparing the actual sitting position of drivers of passenger vehicles with the position commonly considered optimal from the viewpoint of active and passive safety, and the long-term effects on the driver’s health. The research described herein was conducted on a sample of randomly selected drivers in Czech Republic. All the measurements were conducted in a single, neutral, medium-sized passenger vehicle with which none of the test subjects had any previous experience. For this reason, none of the tested drivers had the advantage of familiarity with the environment. This research came about as an attempt to re-create the common situation wherein a driver adjusts his/her position behind the steering wheel solely on the basis, of intuition. Through a statistical evaluation of the acquired data, it was possible to confirm the initial hypothesis that a substantial portion of tested drivers assume a less than optimal driving position. This fact has a negative effect not only on reducing active and passive safety, but directly impacts upon the health of drivers who cover high annual mileage. The results of this paper can be used when designing cabins and modern interactive systems for passenger vehicles, which will be able to assist the driver in setting the optimal driving position. In this way, it will be possible to directly impact upon traffic safety and positively influence drivers’ health.