The decline of visual working memory with age for commercial drivers

[Speaker] Shin, Yonghwan:1
[Co-author] Ryu, Jeong:1, Hong, Minsung:1, Chung, Eunkyoung:2
1:Yonsei University (Korea(Republic of Korea)), 2:Kangwon University (Korea(Republic of Korea))

Visual working memory plays an important role in driving conditions. Previous research showed that older drivers had much cognitive burden and were able to cause severe traffic accidents in complex situations because of their memory decline. However, there was no evidence that age-related memory deficit was discovered in real traffic visual stimuli. The goal of our study was to examine the steep decline of visual working memory in older commercial drivers with real traffic signs. Using newly developed tests, we collected data from 304 commercial bus and taxi drivers. Consequently, in a simple test, as drivers' age increased, their performance of visual working memory decreased. Also, we had the same result for a complicated test, which required drivers to remember driving-related space information. This study indicated that older commercial drivers had difficulty remembering driving-related visual stimuli due to the age-related memory deficit than youngers, despite their long-term driving experiences.
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