Elderly Drivers: Big Questions Answered!
From 2000 to 2018, there was a 60% increase in the number of licensed drivers aged 65 and older in the United States.
Many people believe that driving allows elderly adults to stay mobile and retain a sense of independence and freedom. While that may be true for some, sadly the risk of being injured or killed in a motor vehicle accident increases as people age. In the last three years, it’s becoming increasingly clear that elderly motorists may need to be evaluated more frequently in regards to their driving ability.
To get a bit more granular, that means that over 20 elderly drivers were killed and almost 700 were injured each day.
Who Is Most At Risk?
According to the CDC, drivers who are over 75 have shown higher crash death rates when compared to drivers between the ages of 35 and 54. They also note that declines in vision and cognitive functioning due to an increase in age affect older drivers and their abilities.
In Virginia, it’s required by state law for drivers age 75 or older to pass a vision test and to also renew their driver’s license in person at the Department of Motor Vehicles every five years.
Experienced Motor Vehicle Accident Attorneys
An experienced motor vehicle accident attorney recognizes that although a motor vehicle accident can occur within seconds and the serious injuries, pain, disability, and financial losses that result can last a lifetime.
We understand how important it is to ensure that you are compensated for both today and tomorrow, and we are ready to stand up for your rights. Call us today at (855) 435-7247 for more information!
Three Big Questions Answered!
Below, we’ve outlined and answered three of the biggest questions regarding elderly drivers and their safety.
• How Does Age Impact Safe Driving?
As we mentioned above, as our loved ones get older, their ability to drive safely continues to decline. Elderly drivers most definitely have a significant amount of experience behind the wheel of a motor vehicle – they tend to wear their seatbelts more often and it’s less likely to see them drive while intoxicated or under the influence. But, their age may present risks that they did not know they’d have to face, such as slower reflexes, difficulty turning or moving the vehicle, slower reflexes, and changes in their vision.
If your loved one is showing signs of any of these, it may be best to speak to them about using a ride-share app, or letting you take them where they need to go before it’s too late.
• I Think My Loved One Needs to Stop Driving, What Can I Do?
It’s quite common for many families to face these challenging decisions when they believe that one of their loved ones is no longer able to properly operate a motor vehicle. It’s a constant struggle between feeling like you’re doing something to help them stay safe and feeling as if you’re removing their independence by taking their car keys away.
With that said, having open and honest dialogue with them may be the best way to discuss safety, pinpoint the issues that you have, and suggest alternative ways for them to get where they need to go. If they feel as if they can still drive safely, suggest only driving in the daylight when it’s easier to see the road ahead, or driving with another person who may be able to help them navigate the road safely. Some families even find it easier to have their loved ones’ primary care physician speak to them, so it’s coming from a source that’s seen as highly reputable, and one who can explain the dangers involved and when they should actually stop driving for good.
• What Should I Do If I’ve Been Hurt by an Older Driver?
The first thing that you should do is not assume that their age is the root cause of the accident. While we’ve spent plenty of time in this article talking about how elderly drivers can be a danger – not every accident is their fault, and not every elderly driver needs to leave their car keys at home. Instead, as is the case with any motor vehicle accident, you need to take the necessary steps to prove who was at fault for the accident itself.
If however it is proven that the elderly driver in question was at fault for the accident and subsequently your injuries, you may have the ability to pursue compensation for your damages. If you or someone you love is in this situation, click here to contact us now!
The personal injury attorneys here at Marcari, Russotto, Spencer, and Balaban are not just focused on winning your case, we’re also focused on constantly being transparent with our clients; creating and maintaining a relationship that’s based on trust and respect.
When you choose to work with Marcari, Russotto, Spencer, and Balaban, you’ll receive:
- A free consultation.
- Around-the-clock availability through toll-free calling, email, and/or webchat.
- And of course, our attorneys will travel to you! Day, night, weekend, or weekday.
We know that communication is key to having a great relationship with anyone who walks through our doors, and we aim to always keep you up-to-date with your case.
“A serious accident or veteran’s disability can have a huge impact on a person’s life. Knowing I can make a strong influence on the lives of my clients is very important to me.”
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