GREENVILLE, South Carolina. A recent Forbes report noted that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that by 2050, one in four drivers will be over 65 years of age. There are many known facts about ageing that can put older drivers at risk of making more mistakes. For instance, older drivers may have slower reaction times than younger drivers. Older drivers may also not have as good night vision as younger drivers.
Some states have special provisions in place to ensure that older drivers are safe to get behind the wheel. For instance, drivers may have to renew their licenses more often and may be subject to more frequent hearing and vision tests. Some states even require that physicians report individuals they believe could be a driving risk to state authorities.
Yet, are older drivers really putting us all at risk of personal injury on the road? The Greenville, South Carolina car accident attorneys at the Churdar Law Firm see many cases where accidents could have easily been prevented by following the law, avoiding distracted driving, and not speeding. Are older adults really more at risk of making negligent mistakes behind the wheel?
There are certainly some warning signs that family and loved ones can look for when assessing older drivers. According to AARP, a person may not be safe to drive if they cannot see or hear things happening outside the car, if they have trouble moving their feet quickly to the brake pedal, if they cannot turn their bodies to properly back up, or if their reaction time is visibly slower in a sudden challenging situation. Drivers may no longer be safe if they get lost easily or become distracted while driving. Loved ones can also simply observe a family member’s actual driving behavior. Do they fail to follow the rules of the law? Have they been getting into more small accidents or having more “close calls?” It may be time to take away the keys if many of these warning signs are present.
Yet, are all older drivers really a risk? According to Daily Progress, in most cases, the myth of the dangerous older driver is just that—a myth. In fact, older drivers are safer than younger drivers when statistics are taken into account. Additionally, older drivers may be less likely to drive drunk, use their cell phones behind the wheel, or drive at night and in poor weather conditions—all risks that younger drivers may take.
At the end of the day, each person must make a decision about personal safety for himself or herself. And, each person must protect his or her rights when injured. Sometimes it takes a personal injury lawsuit to get a dangerous driver off the road. If you or a loved one has been hurt behind the wheel due to the negligence or mistakes another driver made, contact the Churdar Law Firm, in Greenville, South Carolina. We can assess your case, help you understand your rights, and help you seek justice for your family.