Driving is a skill that is shaped by experience. As we get older, physical changes can make driving a challenge. Older drivers, however, can be safe by following certain tips and practices.
According to a 2020 study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), “there were 6,549 people 65 and older killed in traffic crashes in the United States, accounting for 17 percent of all traffic fatalities” (Older Population, NHTSA). While this percentage is relatively high, the good news is that this statistic represents a ten percent decrease in fatalities for this age group.
The following are tips outlined by the Mayo Clinic and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to help older drivers stay safe on the road:
- Be active. Maintaining flexibility and strength can help with the physical aspects of driving.
- Get regular vision and hearing checks.
- Make sure medications don’t cause drowsiness or have other side effects that affect driving.
- Drive in good conditions and avoid distractions.
- Take a refresher course, which may entitle you to a discount on insurance. Check out Florida Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles’ list of approved courses: https://www.flhsmv.gov/driver-licenses-id-cards/florida-granddriver/mature-driver-discount-insurance-courses/
- Plan ahead. Check the weather and plan your route.
Fortunately, there are many resources available. The Florida Department of Elder Affairs has a list of programs available to older drivers: https://elderaffairs.org/programs-services/transportation/
At Phil Hall, P.A., we handle personal injury, Long-Term Disability claims, and hurricane damage claims. If you have questions, call us for a free consultation at 850-760-2156.