Canadian statistics show that drivers over the age of 70 are one of the age groups most frequently involved in accidents – second only to male teenage drivers. If a senior is involved in an accident, they are less likely to make a full recovery from their injuries because of their age and often fragile state.
To help keep roads safe and prevent senior drivers from being involved in accidents, driving.ca has compiled a list of warning signs that could indicate your elderly loved one is no longer a safe driver.
Mysterious dents, scratches or scrapes – An obvious red flag is if your elderly loved one’s vehicle has a significant number of dings or dents but they cannot explain how they got there.
Mixing up the gas and brake pedals – Statistics show that as much as 10 percent of those over 65 may have dementia, which increases their chance of being involved in an accident by 4.7 per cent. Dementia can cause confusion, often leading to instances in which the driver confuses the gas and brake pedals. Accidents in which a driver slams on the gas instead of the brake can have grave consequences.
Delayed reactions – Aging greatly reduces hand-eye coordination and response times. Driving requires that we be alert and ready to react quickly to avoid an accident. If your loved one struggles to react to situations, it may be a sign they should not be on the road.
Decreased mobility – Along with age also comes limited mobility. If your loved one has gotten to the point where they no longer have the range of motion required to operate a vehicle, it is probably best they no longer drive.
History of falls – A study conducted by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety discovered that seniors with a history of falls are more likely to be involved in an accident. This is because their fall may have led to physical limitations or because their fear of falling again has limited their activity and weakened their physical strength, both of which can inhibit their driving ability.
Knowing when a senior driver should no longer be on the road is an important step in helping keep our loved ones and our roadways safe. If you or someone you love has been injured in a collision, our auto accident lawyers can help.
Contact us today for a free, no obligation consultation.