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Old 13th March 2018, 14:47   #16
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Default Re: Illusion of Attention: You have no idea what you are overlooking!

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Originally Posted by ashis89 View Post

A few of my experiences and observations:

...
I can vouch for all the points that you have mentioned here. However, as I primarily learnt driving on NH-01 (doing almost 90% for initial two-three years), a few of these are almost second nature.

I specifically look for parked trailers/trucks on the left lane. It happens ever so often on NH-08 in Gurgaon and most of the accidents that gets the highway jammed once or twice every month happen due to this. It's illegal but people don't learn.

Whenever I start tailing a big vehicle, the first thing I scan for is the status of its brake lights. If they work, we are good. If not, I get into manual mode.

Travelling in and out of western UP, I always check with locals about the roads. It has become a habit because of both road quality and safety concerns.

One trip to Manali is sufficient to make one learn about sudden maneuvers of big vehicles. The first two- three (nervous) hours till Bilaspur made me understand that the truck drivers almost never give way to you by these swing maneuvers. Using a cricket phrase, you just play inside the line and never fancy the front foot cover drive. Scan the road till far and stay patient.

Whenever I overtake a big vehicle, de facto I flash and check if the driver sees me. I know that they have blind spots and flashing into their mirrors usually gets their attention.

Bluetooth calls are limited to yes/no/co-ordinates/ETA type calls or those office meetings where I don't have an active role. That works as Radio.

Off topic:
Even more than the using OVRMs, I roll down the glass and stick my neck out while reversing. I get the idea of the space beforehand and then I take my margin towards right. The car goes clean as a whistle.
My car has camera, parking sensor, everything. My friends find it funny Maybe itís too desi, but I am never able to sync camera IN and the steering movement. Its automatic with my neck out. I recall one guy wearing dark tinted goggles with some hot babe as the front passenger trying to reverse a car on a big stone which he can't see on the OVRM.
He doesn't look out at all. I saved the brand-new red Aspire from getting scratched by first making gesture and then getting down from the scooter.
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Old 13th March 2018, 15:25   #17
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Default Re: Illusion of Attention: You have no idea what you are overlooking!

A very important and pertinent topic for all those who are confident about "multi tasking". The brain doesn't multi-task it only switches attention from one task/activity to another - while giving you an appearance of doing multiple things at once.

I observed very early (when mobiles was starting to spread to general population 2000-05 era) that while talking, though my eyes may be on the road - the object focus and object tracking couldn't take place. If I focussed on the objects on the road and indulged in tracking them it became IMPOSSIBLE to hold a conversation - I was able to listen but not comprehend - similarly I was unable to respond properly. That showed me that driving cannot be mixed with any other activity.


This also brings up a very related topic but something that may require a dedicated thread of its own: what about eyewitness testimony? Isn't that also subject to the in-attention.

The eyewitness, in maximum cases, do not anticipate a future event - so what they see / hear and present as a testimony is most definitely incomplete and perhaps wrong also in some cases!

Last edited by alpha1 : 13th March 2018 at 15:26.
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Old 15th March 2018, 11:11   #18
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Default Re: Illusion of Attention: You have no idea what you are overlooking!

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Originally Posted by ashis89 View Post

3. Vehicles parked beside the road might seem harmless. They have the potential to hide living beings who might feel like come out of their hiding and onto your path.
I have had many experiences with this but not in a vehicle. I go on walks and some stretch of my route has a lot of parked cars or cars dropping people. From these cars, people have opened doors directly into me. I am a big person and it is during daytime. Don't people look out of the doors when they open it? Where do they expect the person right outside their door to go?
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Old 15th March 2018, 11:46   #19
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Default Re: Illusion of Attention: You have no idea what you are overlooking!

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I have had many experiences with this but not in a vehicle. I go on walks and some stretch of my route has a lot of parked cars or cars dropping people. From these cars, people have opened doors directly into me. I am a big person and it is during daytime. Don't people look out of the doors when they open it? Where do they expect the person right outside their door to go?
People stop looking into their ORVMs once they have parked their vehicles. It is a general instinct that we barge out of the car once we park it (I still make that mistake on rare occasions but have corrected it immediately). Best method, look into the ORVM or look back through the rear glass to get an idea of people behind you on the road. If the road is busy, open the door a couple of inches and wait a few seconds. An alert person, who is behind you on the road, will notice that someone might come out of the car and will be careful. However, this doesn't mean that we block the road and open the vehicle doors to get out now.

My other concern are the people (or even animals) who are hidden behind parked vehicles. They don't get a clear view of the road. At the same time, a person moving on the road doesn't get to see them. It is up to the people who are off the road, to be extra careful, peep to judge the traffic, try to let their presence known slowly and gradually and then, move into the road. Medians with thick plantations can help obstruct glare from oncoming traffic at night but they are also hide living beings who can jump on to the road if not aware.

A common threat is the vehicles parked between the entry and exit of a fuel bunk. If it's a truck, it can easily obstruct the vision between the traffic on the road and those coming out of the bunk. My dad had a severe accident only because of this issue.

Last edited by ashis89 : 15th March 2018 at 11:50.
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Old 15th March 2018, 13:26   #20
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Default Re: Illusion of Attention: You have no idea what you are overlooking!

There is a book called "Art of living Consciously" by Dr. Nathaniel Branden. Nathaniel is considered the Father of Psychology.

In this book, he says, Living consciously in life reduces 99% of the problems in life. This is a universal truth that goes beyond space and time, applicable to every living being in entirety. Also, he says, it is a natural phenomena that any living /non living entity tries to attain its natural "Resting" state that is considered most "stable".

Applying this to human brain, it always tries to return from "active thinking(Cerebrum)" state to "Passive resting state" left to itself. In this process, it delegates the natural involuntary functions to hind brain (Medulla). Functions that are practiced heavily by brain is probably considered involuntary functions.

This is similar to how water resumes room temperature after heating or cooled. The moment the heating is stopped, instantaneously. 100 degree C water starts dropping its temperature and resumes room temperature. Similarly, the moment ice cube is removed from freezer, it starts increasing its temperature from 0 degree to room temperature.

There has to be a constant effort to ensure the brain is in active state while doing a job. If we are unaware of this characteristics of brain, unknowingly, we will allow the brain to go to passive state.

When this is a natural phenomena that is universal, there is nothing surprising that while driving, our brain delegates driving to Medulla and concentrates on phone or other stuff.

SO, I ALWAYS FOLLOW, SINCE DRIVING WITHOUT CONSCIOUS IS NOT ONLY DETRIMENTAL TO YOU/YOUR VEHICLE, BUT ALSO, FOR OTHER INNOCENTS ON THE ROAD, FORGET ALL OTHER ACTIVITIES WHILE DRIVING IRRESPECTIVE OF HOW EXPERIENCED YOU ARE.
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Old 16th March 2018, 00:30   #21
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Default Re: Illusion of Attention: You have no idea what you are overlooking!

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Originally Posted by Latheesh View Post
Half way through the turn when his car and my car exactly in the position shown, he changed his mind and decided to turn right driving straight to my car (driver side door). I accelerated and avoided his car hitting mine.He rolled down the window and said exactly the same "Sorry, I did not see your car" and had phone in his hand.
Thanks Latheesh for bringing this topic. This is one aspect which many drivers specially many 2wheelers are not following at all. I have seen many times, that even when they are NOT on phone, they miss the corners and obviously other vehicles also. Looks like people are stressed out or thinking about something and NOT focussing on the job at hand (driving).

Me and my friend are still alive because of fast action coupled with GOD's help. We were travelling on a 2 wheeler on a slight downhill in Kerala and about to make an automatic left turn when I saw an ambassador taking the turn at very high speed, lost his control and swerved on to his right straight on us. I was driving and took a sharp turn to right to avoid collusion almost to the right corner of the turn. We narrowly missed rammed by the car. Luckily there was no other vehicle behind us and none behind the other vehicle. He went and rammed on to a lorry parked on the side. Luckily he escaped with minor injuries (probably because of Amby). When we went to take him out to hospital, saw him holding his mobile on his hand. He was partially conscious and I was sure that he would have been on his phone while driving.

I had also been guilty and got caught by police, once, when I used phone while driving. From that time onwards, I park the car on the side, finish the call and then move on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ashis89 View Post
3. Vehicles parked beside the road might seem harmless. They have the potential to hide living beings who might feel like come out of their hiding and onto your path.
Rightly said, Ashis89. I had multiple experiences when I was travelling on my 2wheeler, a car parked on the side of the road, suddenly moves in to the road right in front of me and I would have almost crashed onto them (even at speed of 40 km/hr city road). People does not have patience to look, wait, allow other vehicles to pass and get sufficient space before joining the traffic. So it always make me conscious when I see a parked car and observe if there is a person behind the wheel.
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