How to Drive Safely and Responsibly as a Senior Citizen
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Summary: There are some unavoidable driving dangers that older people need to understand. This does not necessarily mean they can’t drive, but that they should take extra care in prioritizing safety.
Many senior citizens are actually some of the best drivers on the road. They are usually experienced, less aggressive, and follow the rules of the road. Still, there are some unavoidable driving dangers that older people need to understand. This does not necessarily mean they can’t drive, but that they should take extra care in prioritizing safety. Below, we detail a few critical driving safety guidelines for seniors.
As you age, your physical and mental capabilities start to decline. Fortunately, there is one consistent method that curbs these effects: Exercise. When you stay active, you keep both your muscles and mind sharp. Doing so is critical on the road because often, to avoid an accident, you must make a sudden maneuver. To do that, you need a sharp mind to notice the hazard and an active body to steer away or hit the brakes.
Schedule a Vision and Hearing Test
One dangerous aspect of getting older is losing your vision. While on the road, you must look far in front of you. That’s how you will detect other cars, animals, or people in your path. If you cannot see, you are at risk. Second, hearing is more important than most people think. Between horns, screeching tires, and every other sound on the road, having the ability to hear is vital. For these reasons, it is best to schedule regular tests for your vision and hearing. That way, you can catch your senses failing before it is too late.
Be Aware of Your Limitations
As you get older, your ability to make complicated driving maneuvers lessens. Rather than fight this, you can adjust your behavior to make sure it does not harm you. A few changes you should probably make are traveling at a slower speed, avoiding night driving, and increasing your following distance at all times.
Drive When You’re at Your Best
As a senior, you’re going to have good days and bad days. On some, you’ll feel young, spry, and alert. These are the days that you should feel safe behind the wheel. Other times, you’ll find that you’re tired, in pain, and moving slowly. When this is the case, try to get a ride from somebody else.
Keep Your Phone Out of Reach
When the cell phone started to gain mass popularity in the late 90’s, there were no road safety rules regarding them. The result is that people who drove during this time adopted the habit of talking on the phone while driving. Many even devoted their driving time to taking calls on purpose. Unfortunately, safety experts have proven that talking and texting are unsafe, no matter how experienced you are. If you are a senior driver, keep your phone in your trunk or glove box to lessen temptation.
Whether you ’re a senior yourself, or you know and love one, understanding the driving tips on this list is a smart idea. That way, we can keep everyone safe and healthy on the roads. Still, accidents can happen to anyone. If this is the case for you, be sure to discuss your options with a St. Louis car accident attorney.
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