Protecting Senior Drivers
Many senior drivers are safe behind the wheel and can maintain their independence and drive responsibly. In fact, some argue that senior drivers are safer than young drivers because they take fewer risks and speed less often. Of course, as Miami continues to grow as a retirement destination, the need to ensure seniors drive safely is clear. Florida law reflects this reality and subjects seniors to stricter licensing requirements. For example, drivers over 80 must renew their license every six years, instead of the usual eight. Seniors are also required to take vision tests each time they renew their license. If you have a senior family and you are worried about their safety this article will give you a few tips for reducing their chances of causing a car accident.
How Can I Ensure my Senior Drives Safely?
Many senior drivers will be able to remain on the road with a little extra help and adjustment to their car. If you have a senior loved one who drives and you’re concerned about their safety there are a few things you can do to help them driver safer:
- Encourage a Doctor’s Visit: a doctor will be the first to notice signs of dementia or other issues that may make a senior unsafe on the road. A doctor may have simple fixes to help ensure they are able to drive safer.
- Pay Attention to Warning Signs: family may also be the first to notice when a senior loved one is having difficulty driving. These signs include an increase in near misses, mobility issues or confusion while driving.
- Use an Occupational Therapist: an occupational therapist can evaluate a senior’s ability to driver and make simple adjustments that will make driving safer. For example an OT may adjust the gas/brake pedal to make reaching the pedal easier.
- Offer Alternatives to Driving: talk to your senior about other ways they can travel around town. Creating a family car pool or using driver services such as Uber may allow a senior who can no longer operate a car to maintain their independence without causing a safety issues on the road.
- Encourage New Driving Habits: senior can take other precautions to decrease their chances of causing an accident. Simple solutions such as driving during the daytime, avoiding driving in bad weather and staying on well-known roads can help a senior stay safe on the road.
Let an Attorney Help You
Even if you and your senior take all these precautions an accident may still occur. Driving with impaired vision or mobility can cause severe damage to the senior driver and accident victims. If you a have been in an accident with a senior driver or if your senior driver has caused an accident, you need legal assistance. Let the Miami car accident attorneys at the office of Alan Goldfarb, P.A. help you evaluate your case and advise you on the best next steps. Please contact us today to schedule an initial consultation.