How to Stay Safe as a Senior Driver
From highways to residential streets, defensive driving is key to staying safe on the road. But aging drivers face a particularly difficult set of challenges that go beyond simply obeying traffic laws. For example, aging drivers experience physical changes that may affect driving, such as vision issues and cognitive decline. Across the country, one in six drivers is 65 years or older, so it’s important to stay aware as a senior driver.
If you’ve been injured in a car accident in Arizona, contact our accident attorneys at ELG Law. Our team of auto accident lawyers is here to help you safeguard your legal rights after a crash. Though auto accidents can’t always be avoided, here are safety tips that senior drivers should keep in mind to stay safe on the road.
Senior Driver Statistics
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there were more than 40 million licensed drivers ages 65 and older across the country in 2015 alone. This marks a 50 percent increase from 1999.
Furthermore, nearly 7,000 senior drivers were killed and almost 300,000 were injured in vehicle wrecks that same year. That means that almost 20 older adults are killed and 700 are injured in crashes each day across the country.
Data also shows that fatal crash rates for seniors begin rising around the ages of 70 to 74 and are highest among drivers who are 85 years or older.
Due to increased susceptibility to medical complications or injury, the data is somewhat skewed when it comes to senior drivers. Senior drivers aren’t always more likely to get into wrecks, but they are more likely to sustain serious injuries in collisions.
Safety Tips for Senior Drivers
If you are a senior driver or are caring for an older adult who is still on the road, it’s important to keep a few safety tips in mind. First, speak to your doctor about your medical conditions. Assess whether your medical conditions affect your ability to drive safely.
This may mean having your doctor or pharmacist review your list of prescriptions and over-the-counter medications. Your doctor can evaluate potential side effects or drug interactions to ensure you stay safe on the road.
Senior drivers should also complete an eye exam each year. If you need glasses or contacts for driving, wear your corrective eyewear as required.
It’s important to plan ahead as a senior driver. When possible, map your driving route ahead of time. Ensure that you always travel in well-lit areas and try to use higher-traffic routes. Keep in mind that remote roads may not have intersections with arrows or easy parking.
Furthermore, you should drive during daylight and avoid traveling in inclement weather. Driving at night, even with corrective eyewear, can be dangerous.
Finally, senior drivers should look into alternates to driving when they can. Utilize public transportation or ride with friends and family members, especially for medical appointments.
Auto Accident Attorney in Arizona
Keep these safety tips in mind, and prepare yourself as a senior driver on the road. Driving safely is the best way to prevent the risk of auto accidents. But if you’ve sustained injuries in a crash, contact our Phoenix auto accident attorneys at ELG Law. Call us at (623) 562-3838 for a free, no-hassle consultation and legal aid today.