Do you have an aunt or uncle, grandmother or grandfather, or even a parent who has reached the age of 65 or older and are adamant about driving? Do you believe they may be at risk of causing an accident when getting behind the wheel of their vehicle? Well, car accident lawyers in Texas are here to shed some light on the topic and provide some research that may just prove elderly drivers are in fact at risk when operating their automobile.
While this may not apply to all individuals who have reach that 65 mark in their life, the Insurance Journal highlighted a study conducted and has provided some evidence as to why the elderly have an increased chance of engaging in a crash over the many others who are out occupying the roadways. One way to determine whether or not your loved one has reached a point where driving is more of a risk than a form of simple transportation is to take into consideration “the changes in functionality and skills needed for safe driving.”
According to Lisa Kirk, who is an assistant professor in Florida Atlantic University’s Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing, driving “involves a wide range of cognitive processes that require” many things from the motorist. For instance, she states that they must be able to:
- Handle multiple stimuli at the same time.
- Have the ability to react quickly in an emergency.
- Judge distances.
- Stay alert and attentive for long periods of time.
- See and interpret traffic signs and signals.
While some elderly drivers are aware of their conditions and the fact that driving may not be as easy as it once was, Texas car crash attorneys nearby point out that others may not be aware as memory is also something that affects someone coming into old age. Alzheimer’s disease is one illness that may leave an elderly individuals unaware that they are unable to properly operate their vehicle and could ultimately result in them causing an accident.
So, what can you do to determine if your elderly relative is still capable of operating their own automobile?
- Have them tested for vision and physical functionality.
- Determine if their cognitive skills are up to par to practice safe driving
- Have them take “an on-road test in a dual-controlled vehicle.”
While these are only suggestions that have been provided by FAU’s Memory and Wellness Center, it is important for you to help make a difference in keeping your loved ones safe. Car crash law firms nearby in Texas note that an auto accident can occur within the blink of an eye, and you don’t want your loved one being put at risk, or posing as a threat to others out on the roads.
With this newly acquired information, you can be the judge in making the chief decision as to whether your elderly relative should be checked or simply provided with an alternate form of transportation so they can get to and from their desired locations.