Experts are offering tips for older drivers to help them reduce their risk of being involved in a road traffic accident.
While research indicates that older people are just as safe on the roads as other motorists, they are still required to renew their driving licence when they reach the age of 70 and every three years after that.
Road safety charity the IAM is urging older people to keep up to date with their licence renewals so they do not end up driving illegally.
Eyesight problems raise accident risk
When drivers renew their licence, they are asked to self-certify the state of their
health. The IAM asks motorists to be honest with themselves and consider going for a check-up with their GP before choosing which box to tick.
This is because drivers are legally required to inform the DVLA as soon as possible if they are diagnosed with a medical condition which could impair their ability to drive.
For example, drivers must tell the DVLA if they are diagnosed with a condition which causes vision impairment. The law requires all drivers of all ages to be able to read a car number plate from a distance of 20 metres, and to wear glasses or contact lenses if necessary when driving.
Driving assessments available
The IAM advises that online and on-road assessments are available for older drivers to make sure their driving is still up to scratch.
IAM chief examiner Peter Rodger said experienced motorists may view driving as an “automated activity” but warned that it requires acute observation and manual skills.
Mr Rodger added: “As we age, unfortunately our health will deteriorate, which may mean that it’s time to hang up the driving gloves. You should consider whether you are still able to drive safely, what steps you can take to ensure you are up to the job, and what legal requirements you have to register your illness.”
If you have been injured in a road traffic accident, you may be entitled to compensation. Accident Advice Helpline can help you find out if you are eligible to make a claim.
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Date Published: October 3, 2013
Author: David Brown