Senior drivers may experience physical declines, mental declines, and other changes that go along with aging. The changes many people experience as they age can negatively impact their driving skills. As a result, drivers aged 70 and older are the demographic group with the second highest rate of motor vehicle collisions. Only teen drivers cause more auto accidents than senior drivers.
The number of senior drivers is growing as more aging baby boomers are on the road, which means the risk of car crashes caused by seniors is also growing. Most people outlive their driving life by several years, and seniors must work closely with their doctor and family members to determine when it is time to stop driving. If a senior continues to operate a vehicle once he or she is no longer capable of being safe behind the wheel, there is a significant likelihood the elderly driver will cause a crash. When this happens, the senior’s car insurance should pay for damages, and car accident victims should get help from an attorney to pursue a claim.
Senior Drivers and Long Beach Car Accident Risks
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports there are around 36 million licensed drivers aged 65 and older on U.S. roads. This is 36 percent more senior drivers than in 1999.
Unfortunately, more than 5,560 seniors are killed and 214,000 older adults are injured in car accidents over the course of the year. That is 15 elderly motorists killed and 586 others injured in car accidents on a daily basis. Men, more than women, tend to be involved in fatal collisions. The rate of fatal collisions begins to “increase noticeably” between age 70 and 74. Because the rate of senior car crashes is higher than any other demographic group except teenagers, experts believe many of these crashes are a result of cognitive and mental decline from aging.
There are many reasons Seniors are more likely than other demographic groups to cause accidents. For example, as a person ages, reasoning ability begins to decline, memories worsen, and vision begins to deteriorate. These can create a serious risk for seniors behind the wheel. While seniors tend to use their seatbelt more often than other motorists, drive when conditions are the safest, and are least likely to drink and drive, these do not outweigh age-related issues.
American Occupational Therapy Association urges family members of elderly motorists to be on the lookout for symptoms suggesting a senior is no longer safe to drive. Seniors may also undergo a routine driving fitness exam with their physician to determine if it is a good idea for them to continue operating a motor vehicle. If a senior drives when he or she is no longer capable, there is a very real possibility an accident will happen and a lawsuit will follow.
A Long Beach Personal Injury Lawyer Can Help
Your Injuries are Personal to Me
When a senior drives after he is no longer capable of being safe behind the wheel, he can cause accidents that result in serious injuries. A Long Beach accident lawyer can help victims to pursue a damage claim after they are involved in a car accident with a senior driver.
The Law Office of Michael D. Waks provides representation after elderly motorists have caused motor vehicle accidents. I have helped many clients to successfully recover for their losses after collisions and I will fight for your right to full compensation.
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