Carroll & Turner PSC

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Modern safety features can make driving safer for older people

As the American population ages, so do the number of senior and elderly drivers on the road. As people get older, they may feel as young as ever in some ways. However, their mental and physical capabilities diminish. Their senses aren't as good as they once were. Reaction time increases. Diminished mobility may make it harder to switch from the accelerator to the brake as quickly as necessary.

Even though older drivers tend to have safer driving habits, such as wearing seat belts and not exceeding posted speed limits, they still have a high injury and death rate. Besides suffering injuries themselves, they can put other drivers and passengers at risk.

If you have an older driver in the family, one way to help them (and others) stay safe is to encourage them to invest in a newer model car with easy-to-use safety features. Among the safety features that are now standard or at least available as add-ons are lane departure warnings, blind spot detection systems and rear-view cameras.

Of course, it's essential that your loved one learns how to use these features and feels comfortable with them. Too much new technology can be overwhelming to an older person who's been driving the same car for decades.

When older people are involved in crashes, their injuries can be more serious than they would be for a younger person. Their bones are more fragile, for one thing. If they're already suffering from medical conditions, healing from their injuries can take longer.

If an aging family member suffers injuries in a crash caused by another driver, it's essential that you work to seek the compensation required to get the necessary medical care, physical therapy and other treatment they need to recover.

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