Do you have a loved one age 65 or older? If not, you will likely have a loved one who is 65 soon. Data provided by the U.S. Census Bureau indicates that all baby boomers will be 65 years of age or older by the year 2029. At that time, more than 20 percent of the United States population will be over the age of 65 years. One concern with an aging population is an increase in the risk of motor vehicle accidents.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that the risk of being killed or injured in a motor vehicle accident increases with age. During 2014, over 236,000 older drivers were injured in motor vehicle accidents, and 5,700 older drivers were killed in motor vehicle accidents. Sadly, these figures may increase substantially when the number of senior drivers increases. What can you do to help prevent senior driving accidents in Fresno?
Tips for Senior Drivers
The first step you can take is to help your loved one be a safe driver by sharing safety tips that may help your loved one avoid a crash. Safety tips for senior drivers include:
- Senior drivers should have regular eye exams and physicals to identify any illnesses or conditions that could impair their ability to operate a motor vehicle safely.
- Planning a route before leaving home that covers known roads and areas can help reduce crashes.
- Review all drug side effects to ensure that any drugs being used won’t impair the senior driver’s ability to drive a vehicle.
- Regular exercise helps to maintain strength and flexibility.
- Avoid night driving and driving during inclement weather when visibility is low.
How Do I Know When an Elderly Person Should Stop Driving?
Unfortunately, there may still come a time when a senior driver should hand over the keys and give up driving. It can be very difficult for a person to admit their age impairs their abilities to drive. Giving up driving also means giving up part of their independence and privacy. A senior who can’t drive must rely on public transportation, family, or friends to take them where they need to go.
While no one wants to admit they should give up driving, continuing to drive when you know you can’t be safe on the road puts everyone in danger. The best thing you can do for a loved one is to help him admit when he should give up driving. The 10 signs that a senior driver may need to stop driving provided by AARP are:
- Close calls or near crashes
- Noticing dents and scrapes on the vehicle or evidence that the senior ran into garage doors, curbs, fences, mailboxes, etc.
- Being lost, especially in a familiar part of town
- Problems with eyesight
- Decreased response time to unexpected situations, confusing the pedals or having trouble moving their foot from the gas pedal to the brake pedal
- Misjudging distances
- Episodes of road rage
- Problems with concentration and becoming easily distracted
- Difficulty turning around or moving to check mirrors and look to the side and behind the vehicle
- Multiple warnings or traffic tickets
If you see one or more of the above signs, it is time to have a serious talk with your loved one. Having this discussion may not be easy; however, you could prevent a terrible tragedy by helping a senior driver understand it is time to give up driving.
Call a Fresno Accident Attorney If You Have Been Injured in A Car Accident
If a negligent or reckless driver causes you to be injured, you need to consult with an experienced Fresno car accident attorney. Our attorneys offer free consultations and no-obligation case evaluations.
Call Torem & Associates at 1-800-954-4444 or use the contact form on our website to request more information or schedule a free consultation with a Fresno accident attorney.