A central Florida lawyer gives guidance on seniors and car accidents
Struggling to change lanes and slower reaction times are among issues that arise for some senior citizens after a certain age. U.S. News & World Report found that no one-size-fits-all answer applies to the emotionally charged question of whether there is an age limit for drivers.
Seniors are individuals, which means some continue driving well and others experience problems. Statistics may give a false picture, since seniors are more likely to be injured in even minor accidents. We also know that younger drivers are not immune to making mistakes, while some older drivers have the benefit of decades of experience on the road.
What to look for
XXX identifies things that loved ones and friends can look for in helping seniors assess whether to continue driving:
- Struggling to change lanes
- Problems turning, particularly with left turns
- Driving too slow or too fast
- Slow reaction time
- Other drivers honking
- Hitting curbs
- Following signals
- Scrapes on cars driven
Another step that a son, daughter, relative or friend can take is to talk to the senior’s friends about whether the older driver has reported getting lost, for example. They also can check with a physician on whether medication changes have occurred.
Options include starting the driving conversation now, before problems develop with an older driver, seeking a reevaluation by the state department of motor vehicles and doing it all with empathy for the senior citizen, Cirillo says.
Challenges for seniors
According to the National Institute on Aging, arthritis, which is common in older adults, can impair driving by limiting head-turning ability. Older drivers may also have trouble seeing in the dark, and should see an eye doctor every year after age 65.