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  1. A popular posture for using wireless technology is reclined sitting, with the trunk rotated posteriorly to the hips. This position decreases the head’s gravitational moment; however, the head angle relative to the trunk is similar to that of upright sitting when using a tablet in the lap. This study compared cervical extensor musculotendon length changes from neutral among 3 common sitting postures and maximum neck flexion while using a tablet. Twenty-one participants had radiographs taken in neutral, full-flexion, and upright, semireclined, and reclined postures with a tablet in their lap. A biomechanical model was used to calculate subject-specific normalized musculotendonmore »lengths for 27 cervical musculotendon segments. The lower cervical spine was more flexed during reclined sitting, but the skull was more flexed during upright sitting. Normalized musculotendon length increased in the reclined compared with an upright sitting position for the C4-C6/7 (deep) and C2-C6/7 (superficial) multifidi, semispinalis cervicis (C2-C7), and splenius capitis (Skull-C7). The suboccipital ( R 2  = .19–.71) and semispinalis capitis segment length changes were significantly correlated with the Skull-C1 angle (0.24–0.51). A semireclined reading position may be an ideal sitting posture to reduce the head’s gravitational moment arm without overstretching the assessed muscles.« less
  2. Problem: Previous research have focused extensively on crashes, however near crashes provide additional data on driver errors leading to critical events as well as evasive maneuvers employed to avoid crashes. The Strategic Highway Research Program 2 (SHRP2) Naturalistic Driving Study contains extensive data on real world driving and offers a reliable methodology to study near crashes. The current study utilized the SHRP2 database to compare the rate and characteristics associated with near crashes among risky drivers. Methods: A subset from the SHRP2 database consisting of 4,818 near crashes for teen (16–19 yrs), young adult (20–24 yrs), adult (35–54 yrs), andmore »older (70+ yrs) drivers was used. Near crashes were classified into seven incident types: rear-end, road departure, intersection, head-on, side-swipe, pedestrian/cyclist, and animal. Near crash rates, incident type, secondary tasks, and evasive maneuvers were compared across age groups. For rear-end near crashes, near crash severity, max deceleration, and time-to-collision at braking were compared across age. Results: Near crash rates significantly decreased with increasing age (p < 0.05). Young drivers exhibited greater rear-end (p < 0.05) and road departure (p < 0.05) near crashes compared to adult and older drivers. Intersection near crashes were the most common incident type among older drivers. Evasive maneuver type did not significantly vary across age groups. Near crashes exhibited a longer time-to-collision at braking (p < 0.01) compared to crashes. Summary: These data demonstrate increased total near crash rates among young drivers relative to adult and older drivers. Prevalence of specific near crash types also differed across age groups. Timely execution of evasive maneuvers was a distinguishing factor between crashes or near crashes. Practical Applications: These data can be used to develop more targeted driver training programs and help OEMs optimize ADAS to address the most common errors exhibited by risky drivers.« less