A new study contradicts the assumption that older drivers are dangerous on the road. In fact, the research shows older drivers are considerably safer than younger drivers.
According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety drivers 65 years and older are less likely to drink and drive and speed than any other age group. They are also more likely to wear seatbelts. Contributing to the safety trend, researchers say older drivers also tend to self-regulate, taking fewer trips at night, during wet weather or at peak traffic times.
Common Driving Mistakes
However, an age-related decline in mental and physical abilities makes older drivers more prone to certain types of car accidents. If you notice some of these common mistakes among elderly drivers, you should take immediate action.
- Failing to stay in lane
- Failing to yield the right of way
- Failing to completely stop at a stop sign
- Speeding or driving too slowly
Be Honest With Yourself
Self-awareness is a huge part of driving safely. Answering yes to the following questions indicates it may be time to take a closer look at your driving habits.
- Do you find driving to be scaring or confusing?
- Have you been pulled over for traffic violations?
- Are you suffering from any illnesses?
- Are you taking medications that could impair your ability to drive?
Do You Need An Eye Exam?
Age-related eye problems such as cataracts can develop so slowly, that older drivers may be unaware that their vision is declining.
- High beams, auxiliary lights and fog lights designed to help you see better at night can put you at risk for an accident due to the glare you may experience when oncoming vehicles have these features.
- If you are experiencing sudden blurry vision of problems focusing, you should schedule an eye exam immediately.
Adopting safer driving habits helps reduce your risks and protects others on the road. Nonetheless, accidents cannot always be avoided. If you are in an accident, remember, never leave the scene or you will be committing a crime.
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