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Serious Risks Arise with Older Drivers

by Arthur Elk

 mar_article2If you or a loved one are getting older, it’s time to think about driving and the dangers it may pose. As an accident attorney with experience in this area, I know that there are risks with older drivers in terms of causing accidents and being the victim of an accident.

There is good news and bad news for the aging population of American drivers. First the good news: The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that the increase in older drivers did not lead to an increase in accidents for that age group. The Associated Press reports, “drivers aged 70 and older are less likely to be involved in crashes than previous generations.”

Unfortunately it’s not all good news. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that compared to drivers in the same age group, drivers younger than 30 and older than 70 are more likely to have contributed to a crash (for example, by running a stop sign).

Another concern for older drivers is the fact that a car accident is more life-threatening and dangerous to their health. NHTSA reports that older people are more vulnerable in a crash. The International Research Council on Biomechanics of Injury says a 50-year old female has about a 10% risk of serious injury in a frontal crash, whereas an 80-year old has a 40% risk.

As a car accident attorney, I know that many accidents can be avoided. If you know an aging driver, talk with them about the risks of driving and what they can do to avoid them; it could be a life-saving conversation.

For more information, please read our in-depth article, Too Old to Drive? – Senior Drivers: Assessing ability and legal actions.