This project aimed to evaluate the effects of ambient lighting during practice and performance of simulated helicopter escape sequences. Participants were randomized to one of the following groups to practice a standard helicopter underwater escape sequence: Light (with room lights on), Dark (with room lights off), or Graduated (in the light for the first half and then in the dark for the second half of the trials). Following practice, participants had a minimum of 30 min break, followed by retention testing in the dark and then in the light. Dependent measures included accuracy and movement time. Results indicated that participants performed more accurately during the dark retention trial than during the light retention trial. This could be due to increased arousal elicited by performance in the dark or, alternatively, may suggest that performance of helicopter escape sequences is not visually mediated. Based on findings, it appears that training in the light is suitable for potential performance in the dark.
Part of the book: Accident Analysis and Prevention