Senior drivers are among the best drivers on the road. They have more experience and are able to think through situations with more clarity. Younger drivers, on the other hand, tend to act impulsively when behind the wheel and they are three times more likely to tailgate and run through red lights. Unfortunately, the natural aging process can slow down reaction time and impair vision. The purpose of this article is to provide some safety tips, to enable seniors to drive safely for as long as they are able.
- Avoid left turns—28% of accidents involving seniors happen when they are attempting to turn left. This could be attributed to diminished perception to judge distance and/or the speed of oncoming traffic. The statistic is high, so routing your way to the grocery using only right turns may just save your life.
- Avoid the left lane — “Slow and steady wins the race”, concluded Aesop. In this case slow and steady allows you to arrive to your destination safely. Leave the left lane to the speeders. Also, the right lane allows you to plan your exit ahead of time.
- Avoid the highway – If possible try to steer clear from highway travel. You are guaranteed better scenery on the smaller, less traveled roads, too.
- Avoid nighttime travel – Traffic signs are more difficult to read at night, distance is harder to judge, and the glare from oncoming headlights can cause temporary loss of sight. Add that to dangerous drivers on the road, it is best just to avoid driving in the evening.
- Utilize valet services – You’ve earned the right, so enjoy valet parking. Parking lots are dangerous, not just for accidents but also thefts. It’s a small price to pay for your safety and protection, so choose to valet your car whenever possible.
The most important aspect for keeping senior drivers safe behind the wheel is to know when not to drive. If you are recuperating from an illness, injury, or are suffering from an ailment like arthritis, then it is probably best to ask for assistance. Your family and friends may be more than happy to be your temporary personal driver.
We hope these tips keep you safe behind the wheel. Whether you are ready to hang up your keys for a day or permanently, call us and our professional caregivers would be delighted to provide transportation to the grocery store, social events, medical appointments, or wherever you choose. Feel free to give us your input.