|Authors:||Truls Vaa, Torkel Bjørnskau|
The present report discusses inner mechanisms involved in the appraisal of risk, information processing, and the drivers choice of cruising speed. A crucial issue is how risk is appraised and how processes linked to risk appraisal and speed choice should be modelled. Appraisals of risk are modelled from an alternative perspective that emphasizes emotions and feelings and is based on neurological research. This approach offers an alternative to "rational " decicison-making, and we have named it Damasio's model. While emotions are defined as unconscious bodily responses, feelings are defined as ‘feeling an emotion’, i.e. making the reactions and changes of the body conscious. Damasio’s distinction between primary emotions, secondary emotions and feelings, and the ability to monitor the organism unconsciously as well as consciously, are the main elements in what we choose to call the risk monitor. A model of the risk monitor is proposed.