Driver fatigue: A vision-based approach to automatic diagnosis

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49 Scopus citations


In this paper, we describe a system that locates and tracks the eyes of a driver. The purpose of such a system is to perform detection of driver fatigue. By mounting a small camera inside the car, we can monitor the face of the driver and look for eye movements which indicate that the driver is no longer in condition to drive. In such a case, a warning signal should be issued. This paper describes how to find and track the eyes. We also describe a method that can determine if the eyes are open or closed. The primary criterion for this system is that it must be highly non-intrusive. The system must also operate regardless of the texture and the color of the face. It must also be able to handle changing conditions such as changes in light, shadows, reflections, etc. Initial experimental results are very promising even when the driver moves his/her head in a way such that the camera does not have a frontal view of the driver's face.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)399-413
Number of pages15
JournalTransportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2001

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We would like to thank the anonymous reviewer for his detailed comments. This work has been supported by the ITS Institute at the University of Minnesota, the Minnesota Department of Transportation through Contracts #71789-72983-169 and #71789-72447-159, the National Science Foundation through Contracts #IRI-9410003 and #IRI-9502245, the Center for Transportation Studies, and the McKnight Land-Grant Professorship Program at the University of Minnesota.


  • Blink rate
  • Detection of fatigue
  • Driver fatique
  • Microsleeps
  • Visual tracking


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