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Preventing Tunnel Vision

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Preventing Tunnel Vision for Truck Drivers

Preventing-Tunnel-VisionAs a truck driver it’s important to prevent tunnel vision so that you are fully aware of the things around you. The best way to keep your vision active is through continuous scanning.

By keeping your eyes moving, you will be able to detect potential problems ahead of time and reduce the effects of tunnel vision.

Human Vision

Humans have two types of vision, central and peripheral. Central vision offers about three degrees of visibility, and is used to focus on objects and for dedicated tasks such as reading. Your peripheral vision offers roughly 180 degrees of visibility and acts more like an early warning system. It is sensitive to light and movement, so it can alert us to danger or hazards before we see them with our central vision.

What is Tunnel Vision?

When we focus or stare at an object for more than a few seconds, the eye automatically reduces its peripheral vision. This can result in tunnel vision.  The negative affect of this is that we lose the early warning system that the peripheral vision provides.

How should you Scan?

To keep this from happening, keep your eyes scanning, and don’t look at any one object for more than two seconds. Let your eyes move back and forth across both sides of the road. If a car has just pulled over, scanning will allow you to anticipate the driver opening his or her door to step out to the street. If the tires are turned to face the road and brake lights are on, we can deduce that the driver is in gear and waiting to ingress the traffic lane. Scanning dynamically will let you anticipate a potential accident and help you to avoid getting caught up in it.

Many ordinary events can turn into a roadway hazard. If you notice potential hazards ahead of time, you will be ready to react with more time. Scanning ahead will also cause you to drive smoother. You’ll find there are less sudden stops and hard braking during your drives because you aren’t taken by surprise as often.

When scanning ahead, you should anticipate the worst will happen and prepare for it. Always assume something unexpected and catastrophic will happen and convey a plan on how you’ll avoid the situation yourself (increase following distance, shift vehicle in traffic, slow down, etc.). If you don’t recognize a potential threat early enough, you’ll never be able to avoid the hazard in the first place.

Keeping your eyes moving every two seconds will eliminate tunnel vision and keep your peripheral vision active and ready to detect the next hazard on the road.

 

 

Posted by intd on April 20, 2016 |