THURSDAY, March 10, 2011 (HealthDay News) — One reason that elderly people tend to be slower drivers than younger people is because they have a narrower field of vision and have more difficulty seeing pedestrians, according to a new study.
However, older adults are more likely to receive traffic citations and get into accidents than younger drivers. What causes this increase? As we age, factors such as decreased vision, impaired hearing, slower motor reflexes, and worsening health conditions can become a problem.
Older drivers, particularly those aged 75+, have higher crash death rates than middle-aged drivers (aged 35-54). Higher crash death rates among this age group are primarily due to increased vulnerability to injury in a crash.
Many older drivers will leave a larger gap to the vehicle in front and will drive slower. Elderly drivers also could suffer from worse eyesight. While their eyes may be able to focus, as we age, their ability to rapidly adjust from light to dark is reduced. This makes driving into a tunnel harder for older drivers.
NSW. In New South Wales, drivers from the age of 75 must start annual medical assessments to retain a licence. When you reach 85, in addition to the annual medical examination, you must pass a practical driving test every second year to keep your unrestricted drivers licence.
Conclusion: Drivers age 90 and above were at no greater driving risk than those one decade younger. MMSE orientation questions may be useful to assist in identifying which oldest old drivers could benefit from a comprehensive driving evaluation including an on-road test.
If you decide that you would like to stop driving altogether, you can return your licence to a Service NSW Centre, or post it to Transport for NSW with a short covering letter advising us of your decision. You can apply for a NSW Photo Card, if you still need photo identification.
How to Tell Your Aging Parent to Stop Driving
Are Older Drivers Worse than Younger Drivers Since senior drivers are more fragile, their fatality rates are higher than drivers aged 25-64, though older-driver fatalities per capita have gone down by 43% since 1975. Older drivers are more likely to injure themselves than risk hurting others.
The signs that you may want to consider stopping driving
Key Points of This Article: Older drivers cause accidents most often by missing traffic lights and signs at busy intersections, driving the wrong way, and pose extra dangers by driving impaired by medications or when vision is hindered.
As things stand, doctors have a duty to tell the patient if they feel they should stop driving or inform the DVLA. The onus is on the patient to pass the information on. But it does spell out the duty of every doctor to put public safety above patient confidentiality if there is a clear conflict.
People age 70 and older are more likely to crash than any other age group besides drivers age 25 and younger. And because older drivers are more fragile, they are more likely to get hurt or die from these crashes. There’s no set age when everyone should stop driving.
It’s quite possible that an 80-year-old in perfect health can drive safely without posing a threat to oneself or other drivers on the road, while a 60-year-old with impaired vision and a medical condition that affects their motor skills may indeed need to stop driving.