Spraying a rose-scented air freshener in vehicles could reduce the chance of accidents by almost 65 percent, while other scents may increase the risk of accidents, a study conducted by Sussex University said.
According to the study, scents could have a significant impact on the way drivers respond to hazards.
To find out the effects, researchers sprayed different kinds of air fresheners in a driving simulator, as a hazard, such as a vehicle or a cyclist approached.
Accident rates were 64 percent lower when the rose scent was sprayed, the research found, while musky scents increased the chance of accidents by 46 percent.
Researchers note that people act quicker on the sense of smell than visual or auditory information. However, it would currently be difficult to apply the findings in real life since it requires a device to sense hazards ahead of accidents and spray the scent beforehand.