Written by Greg on December 29, 2014
Do you know that by the year 2025 there will be 33 million people 70 years or older in America? This segment of the population will be growing 2.5 as fast as the total population. They will make up the largest percentage of left turn and rear end auto accidents!
Slowly but surely senior citizens have developed a higher accident ratio than teenagers. (This will, in time, seriously impact the typical senior citizen’s pocketbook). (And also, by 2025, the total costs for motor vehicle accidents in the United States will exceed 450 billion dollars.
So what are some other statistics related to ‘elder-driving’? Well it is no secret that as age increases, older drivers generally become more conservative on the road.
Many mature drivers modify their driving habits (for instance to avoid busy highways or night-time driving) to match their declining capabilities.
However, statistics show that older drivers are more likely than younger ones to be involved in multi-vehicle crashes, particularly at intersections.
In addition age-related driving studies have shown that at around the age of 65 drivers face an increased risk of being involved in a car wreck. After the age of 75, the risk of serious injury increases sharply, because older drivers are more vulnerable being injured in an accident.
Three behavioral factors in particular may contribute to these statistics: poor judgment in making left-hand turns; drifting within the traffic lane; and decreased ability to change behavior in response to an unexpected or rapidly changing situation. Vision limitations particular at night may also play a role in increased accidents by elderly drivers.
A Checklist for Elderly Drivers
- Do I get honked at frequently?
- Have I been in recent fender benders?
- Am I prone to get lost?
- Does the rapid appearance of cars surprise me?
- Have loved ones expressed concern about me driving?
If you’ve answered yes to some of these questions you may want to seriously consider whether or not to continue to drive. Giving up the freedom of driving is a difficult choice for anyone. It is not only your safety but also the safety of your community that you must consider.
Also be aware that medications and medical conditions can have an adverse effect on your ability to safely operate your car. Have frequent checkups for both your eyes and ears and speak to your doctor about any concerns you have about the ability to drive safely.
Choices for Getting Around
There are a lot more options for you should you choose to give up driving than you think there are. There are many facilities that offer transportation options as part of the services they offer. There are also religious organizations that have volunteers that will drive you to destinations you want to go.
Giving up driving can also save a lot of money. The average cost of ownership of a car including maintenance, gas and insurance is over $6000 a year. All of a sudden, the use of a taxi, buses or rides by friends or family may not seem so bad.
Renewing Your Texas Drivers License in Texas
Divers who are 79 years old to 84 years old must renew their Texas drivers license in person and the license expires every six years. Drivers 85 years old and older must renew their drivers’ license in person and the license last until the second birthday after the previous expiration date. Drivers over 85 are entitled to a reduced fee for their drivers’ license renewal.
Drivers who are 79 years of age and older must take a vision test when applying for renewal of their license.