The Governor's Office of Highway Safety in Georgia Encourages Seniors to Consider a Drivers' Safety Course
The Governor's Office of Highway Safety in Georgia encourages older drivers to engage in driver safety initiatives to help keep them safe on the road. These initiatives also help older folks maintain some of their independence and mobility by allowing them to remain licensed drivers in Georgia.
These programs are not intended to demean older people or single them out due to their age. Instead, the statistical analysis supports offering safe driving programs designed for older drivers. According to the Governor's Office of Highway Safety in Georgia, older drivers, defined as being 65-years-of-age or older, have a higher mortality rate than teenagers in motor vehicle accidents. Regrettably, the older motorist is most often the person who succumbs to injuries in a crash, and by 2025, auto accidents will be the second leading unintentional cause of death for people 65 or older in Georgia.
The trends show a need to assist older drivers with their driving skills, especially as age robs a person of their cognitive abilities as well as their vision and hearing. Older adults failing to yield, which includes turning left, accounts for the most significant number of accidents, both fatal and non-fatal. The second leading cause of the deadly crashes is failing to remain within the proper lane of travel. Meanwhile, the second most often-cited reason for non-fatal accidents is following too closely to the vehicle in front.
There are several steps for older drivers, and their families can take to enhance safe driving practices. Primarily, drivers of any age, in particular, older drivers need to understand how medication affects their ability to drive. Additionally, older drivers need to understand that reaction times, perception times, and reflexes diminish with age. These realities require motorists to adjust the manner in which they operate a vehicle. Safe driving courses and self-assessment tests can help an older driver understand where their skill level lies and can help them become safer, more responsible drivers as they age.
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