Driving Can Become Dangerous for Aging Adults
Such accidents are indicative of a problem that is all too prevalent among aging adults. According to police, an 82-year-old man hit a pedestrian on June 11 in the downtown section of Millburn, and on June 17, a 79-year-old woman crashed her vehicle into a wall of the Short Hills Racquets Club.
“All drivers, including the elderly, have a responsibility to other drivers and pedestrians to ensure that they have the ability to safely operate a vehicle, and thereby prevent any accidents from occurring,” personal injury attorneys Petrillo & Goldberg said. “Otherwise, they would be acting negligently, and their negligence would be the cause of any injuries or fatalities.”
As reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), these recent incidents are examples of how a decrease in cognitive functions can adversely affect the driving abilities of aging adults. Millburn Police Captain Michael Mulligan stated that drivers who endanger their safety on the road can face many consequences.
Older drivers who have motor vehicle accidents that reveal a potential loss of ability to safely drive a vehicle often receive a citation with a summons for driving carelessly, Mulligan said. Thereafter, they are required to take a driver retest. The retest applies to any driver, regardless of age, who loses their ability to safely drive a vehicle.
Statistics from the New Jersey State Police 2013 Fatal Motor Vehicle Crash Report reveal that there were 752 deadly collisions in New Jersey in 2013. Drivers who were age 65 and older caused the second greatest number of deadly accidents, causing 150 of the 752 collisions. 192 of the 752 accidents were caused by younger drivers between the ages of 17 and 29.
Shani Jarvis, Florham Park’s Assistant Manager of Public Affairs, said that many elderly adults are unwilling to relinquish their license because driving is strongly associated with independence. However, according to Jarvis, driving is not a function of age, but ability. There are many continuing education programs for older drivers offered by several AAA branches, including CarFit and Driver Improvement Program. Such programs just might help prevent an aging driver from becoming involved in a serious motor vehicle accident.Learn more at http://www.petrilloandgoldberg.com/ Petrillo & Goldberg Law 6951 North Park Drive Pennsauken, NJ 08109 1333 Race Street Philadelphia, PA 19107 70 South Broad Street Woodbury, NJ 08096 Phone: 856-486-4343 Fax: 856:486-7979