The Best Ideas to Avoid Car Accidents with Elderly Drivers
It’s an indisputable fact. Elderly people are driving more than ever. According to a 2018 report by TRIP, a national transportation research group, there are currently an estimated 46 million elderly Americans ages 65 and older who account for 15 percent of the population. That number is expected to reach 98 million and 24 percent of the population by 2060.
Fatal accidents involving elderly drivers high in Florida
In conjunction with the growing elderly population, the number of drivers ages 65 and older have increased by 38 percent from 2006-2016. Florida currently has the second highest number of elderly drivers (more than 3 million) and the third highest percentage of elderly drivers (23%) in the nation.
In addition, the number of fatal crashes involving older drivers has increased by 22 percent from 2012- 2016. In 2016, Florida had the highest number of fatalities (682) in the nation – a 41 percent increase from 2012.
Common challenges elderly drivers face
According to the Governors Highway Safety Administration, elderly drivers face three common impairments:
- Declining vision: Vision typically declines in all drivers with age, but other factors, such as road glare and delayed adjustment to light changes, are problematic for older drivers.
- Compromised cognition, memory, and attention: Cognition can be affected by medical conditions, such as dementia and certain medications.
- Poor motor functions: Increased age and conditions, such as arthritis, can impact muscle strength, endurance and flexibility in older drivers.
Addressing the issue with an elderly driver
Discussing this matter with elders can be a touchy subject. Some elderly drivers may not recognize the risk, so, when addressing this issue with a loved one, it’s important to consider these factors:
- If your loved one suffers from a medical condition, check to see how it impacts his or her driving
- Have your loved one take a driving test and observe his or her skills
- Have him or her enroll in a driver safety course
- Check for traffic citations, previous accidents, and anxiety about night driving
- Discuss his or her driving skills without bringing up age
- Explore other transportation options
If you or a loved one were injured in a car accident, you need an experienced West Palm Beach attorney on your side who knows how to fight for victims’ rights. Attorney David J. Glatthorn has more than 30 years of experience taking on insurance companies and helping injured motorists maximize their compensation.
To learn more, contact David J. Glatthorn, P.A. today.