Driving safety is an issue that affects every driver, but it seems that the number of collisions caused by or involving senior citizens in the United States is higher than those of middle-aged or younger drivers.
A report by Caring.com (an online organization that supports caregivers of our elderly) stated that “In 2015, drivers aged 65 and over were the cause of accidents involving 14 million Americans aged 18 to 64”.
Data on Senior Drivers in Car Accidents
A report by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration further confirms that in 2013, drivers age 65 and older accounted for 17 percent of all traffic fatalities. Another 2013 report from the same agency found that of 22,534,777 licensed, senior adults in the 65-74 age range – 14.90% were involved in collisions.
Out of 14,295,739 licensed senior adults in the over 74 age range, there was a 17.96% in collisions!
More research from the National Highway Traffic Administration indicated that in 2013 there were 36.8 million licensed drivers age 65 and older, and with more and more baby boomers coming into their twilight years, those numbers are projected to increase. By the year 2020, there will be over 40 million drivers in the senior age range on the roads.
These projections determine that drivers aged 65 and older will account for 16% of all crashes and 25% of all fatal crashes.
With high percentages of seniors involved in car crashes, and with a growing, senior population in the years to come, it is imperative that senior driving safety become a priority for those still on the road and for those thinking about continuing to drive past a certain age. the time to focus on what can done for senior drivers and what can be accomplished.
Senior Drivers Safety Tips
Limitations with eyesight, hearing, mobility, reaction times, and cognitive ability are concerns, along with chronic health problems, side effects from medication, and other aging aspects. Since operating a car requires such abilities, it is important for seniors to monitor any vision changes and hearing difficulties.
Tip #1 Keep abreast of health issues
Tip #2 Check your reflexes
Tip #3 Choose a car that is easy for you to move in and out of with ease
Tip #4 Take a Driver Improvement Course through the AARP or AMAC
Tip #5 Have someone else drive you
There are cars now with built-in collision avoidance systems, adaptive headlights, joined cars and lane wandering technological devices that aid seniors with driving difficulties.
There are potential insurance discounts for the completion of driver improvement courses, and there are additional online courses and self-evaluation tools that further help seniors. Retirement organizations like the AARP and AMAC have also aligned with local, state, and insurance providers to create programs to address the needs of senior drivers. States have also been part of the effort to recognize, evaluate and manage older drivers with safety issues who are unable to change or are unwilling to adjust their driving habits.
Safe driving and driver safety will always be of critical concern, no matter the age of the driver. Accidents do happen in spite of defensive measures to prevent collisions, and cars involved in accidents do require repair. Carwise has the interest of vehicle owners affected by such accidents and wants to be of help. Connect with one of our body shop technicians for a free estimate for any car accident damage and repair costs. Our concern is with driver safety and the safety of your vehicle.