As we age, it's normal for our driving abilities to change. By reducing risk factors and incorporating safe driving practices, many of us can continue driving safely long into our senior years. It even more important to focus on these risks factors and bettering our driving during the dangerous winter driving season. With snowy and icy roadways, our risks for accidents increase, especially for elderly drivers.
As a group, seniors age 80 and older have the highest rate of fatal crashes per mile driven -- even higher than for teens -- according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IHS). About 5,500 adult drivers age 65 and older die each year in vehicle crashes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). That's double the number of teens killed annually in vehicle crashes.
Our Cambridge accident lawyers note it's important for seniors to take honest stock of their own driving abilities. As we age, we see significant changes in our bodies. Over time your joints may get stiff and your muscles weaken. It can be harder to move your head to look back, quickly turn the steering wheel, or safely hit the brakes. When involved in an accident, elderly bodies react much differently than younger ones. And elderly people are more susceptible than younger people to medical complications following motor vehicle crash injuries.
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