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Seniors: Finding the Right Time to Stop Driving

07 Dec Blog | Comments

As seniors, people may have to consider when the best time is to hand in keys and it can be a very challenging decision. Just the thought of possibly losing freedom can drive many seniors into a panic.

The value of any person’s day is usually based on his or her ability to move around. However, if driving skills are becoming more erratic and are putting safety at risk, it is time to be complete a self-assessment to determine if the responsibility can be handled.

Self Assessment

Drivers should know how they feel when they sit in their vehicles. They might feel that driving makes them nervous, in general, or certain situations are difficult to handle, which might include driving on the highway or even parking.

Reaction time is one indicator that it may be time to stop driving, according to numerous health and driving studies, and reaction time worsens with age. Accidents are related to reaction time, according to annual statistics made by safety and state motor vehicle organizations. Drivers must find out their typical reaction time and know how to react fast enough when an unexpected event occurs. It is also important to find out if the vehicle has ever come close to hitting another vehicle, pedestrian, or animal.

Family Assessment

Mature drivers have to consider relinquishing their driver’s licenses if someone they know has requested it because of what they have observed. Loved ones will usually show concern for safety and may give out facts that drivers do not want to hear.

If drivers have heard this type of advice from family members or friends, they will have to listen closely and request certain examples of what they think is poor driving. They could even be referring to a habit or incident that happened years ago. Also, if they know details about a situation where they almost got into an accident, they might want to bring that up and get advice about that.

Professional Assessment

Every state has a number of driver education and training courses in addition to assessments for anyone who needs them. If a driver is thinking about sending in his or her license, they might want to get a professional assessment from a driving instructor first.

It is generally accepted that the aging process transforms the senses. Safe driving has a significant influence on alertness that is related to the major senses.

Other physical transformations could influence driving ability. Drivers could have a difficult time learning how to concentrate, which might be affected by medication. Many pills or illnesses can cause drowsiness or lack of concentration.

Other Considerations

In addition to considering how safe a driver will be in a car, they may have to think about the financial part of driving. Maintaining a car by having insurance and keeping it on the road can add up. Keeping fuel in the tank, for instance, is a regular expense.

Other considerations include keeping the car in a safe place and maintaining it properly in a harsh climate. Drivers could also be shoveling snow out from the tires during winter.

Getting Used to the Changes

When people turn in their licenses or vehicles, any changes that could arrive will be profound. Every day, drivers may not be able to travel to the desired places. It is not easy trying to coordinate a schedule with that of another person.

Along with family and friends, drivers will have access to a number of car pools that operate around the area. Many drivers sell their cars, so there are creative ways to get around a city using public transportation like buses, car pools or rail lines.

In the end, drivers should decide to turn in car keys for the purpose of personal and public safety. Everyone shares the road, but one person who does not pay attention or know how to drive defensively could cause an accident that will affect others as well.

Sometimes, people just need a reminder on how to drive safely. Taking an online mature driver course for drivers who are 55 years or can help to brush up on driving laws, get safety tips and can save 15 percent on auto insurance.


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