The holidays are a time when people travel to see family and when those who may not get out often venture out to see relatives.
While many elderly drivers are just as equipped as younger motorists to behave in a safe manner, there does come a time when older drivers begin to lose their ability to drive effectively. Elderly drivers are at risk of developing a number of different potential problems that can impact their ability to drive, from vision problems to memory problems to slower reflexes and compromised hand-eye coordination.
Elderly drivers who are concerned about their ability to drive should reach out to friends and family over the holidays and ask about getting help with transportation to the festive gatherings they wish to attend. Asheville auto accident lawyers also suggest that family and friends take the opportunity during holiday visits to make sure their older loved ones are still safe when behind the wheel.
Elderly Drivers and the Risks of North Carolina Auto Accidents
News of elderly drivers becoming involved in car wrecks is entirely too-common and one recent November case shows the serious consequences that can result.
WITN reported on November 17 that an 80-year-old man was involved in a wreck, which occurred on Highway 264 West near Washington.
The accident occurred on Friday when the driver reportedly ran into the back of a truck being towed along the highway. The collision forced the tow truck into the Toyota pickup truck in front of it. The driver of the tow truck was subsequently caught between the two vehicles.
The elderly driver was pronounced dead at the accident scene, although it remains unclear whether the car wreck was the cause of the accident or whether he died of a health issue. The other driver was taken to Vidant Medical Center and remains in critical condition. The driver of the Toyota pickup was transported to Beaufort Hospital but sustained no life threatening injuries.
This fatal accident caused the death of one and the injury of two others. While the accident is still under investigation, the driver running into the back of the tow truck indicates that the older man may have been responsible for the crash.
Keeping Elderly Drivers Safe This Holiday Season
Many elderly drivers come to a point in their lives when it is no longer safe for them to operate their vehicles. Unfortunately, they are often unaware of this or do not want to admit that they can no longer drive because they fear it means giving up independence.
If you are an elderly driver and you are experiencing increased difficulties or are concerned about whether you are safe when operating your vehicle, you should talk to your family members this holiday season. By reaching out to get help, you can work with your loved ones to determine if driving is still right for you and you can get suggestions about modifications that can be made to your driving or alternatives to you getting behind the wheel.
For those who have elderly family members or friends they are concerned about, it is also advisable to take time during visits to explore whether something needs to be done about the senior driving. Pay attention to potential physical or mental problems that could create problems with driving and, if you are concerned, talk to the senior or even consider contacting his or her doctor to express your fears and get help.
An accident with an elderly driver can have far-reaching consequences not just for the driver but also for victims as well. Those injured by an elderly driver should seek legal advice to learn what their options are for recovering compensation.
If you or someone you love has been injured or killed in a car crash, contact the Lee Law Offices today for a free and confidential consultation to discuss your case. Call 800-887-1965.
Names Released in Fatal Wreck, One Still Hospitalized. WITN.com, November 19, 2012
Risk of Carolina Traffic Accidents Increase over Thanksgiving Holiday, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, November 15, 2012