There were 550 serious accidents last year where the driver was over the age of 70 and where the driver was either killed or badly hurt, reports the Institute of Advanced Motoring. That statistic represents 8% of the national total of 7,035 similar accidents.
As the number of elderly drivers will double during the next ten years, this represents a problem for elderly drivers and their families – not to mention the insurance industry, police and indeed all of the emergency services!
As the price of car insurance is based on historical claims experience, a 75 year old male driver can expect to pay at least 33% more than if he were aged 50. And women fare even worse. Whilst younger women are renowned for their safe driving, they become more accident-prone as they get older. As a result, elderly women drivers pay the highest rates for car insurance.
Elderly drivers can more easily become disorientated and confused. Even a fraction of a second’s delay can make the difference between an accident and a near miss… Many of the policies for older motorists contain special provisions designed to assist them.
A survey carried out by the Institute of Advanced Motorists confirms that older motorists are aware that they represent an increased accident risk. Seven out of ten older drivers surveyed said they would like to take a
refresher course for motorway driving skills and six out of ten wanted to improve their performance at junctions and on unlit roads. In response to these issues, the Institute has extended its advanced tests to older non-members to encourage them to improve and build up confidence. The tests also help spot any serious problems that should encourage the driver give up driving.