Understanding the Impact of Car Accidents on Senior Drivers
Our population is getting older every day, with an ever-smaller portion of the population made up of minors and young adults. It’s no surprise that we are feeling the influence of aging drivers on the road. For many seniors, driving is an important part of maintaining their independence and their own identity. However, it does come with risks. Not only are seniors at significant risk of a collision, they are more likely to be severely affected by one when it does happen.
When you’re involved in a crash, it’s important to take action and fight for compensation. Call John H. Ruby & Associates at 502-373-8044 to set up a consultation with our Biloxi car accident attorneys.
The Vulnerability of Senior Drivers
While few senior drivers would like to admit it, they are more vulnerable than other parts of the driving population. Driving can be a mentally and physically demanding task, particularly since the technology used for driving now changes on a near-annual basis. It can be incredibly challenging for seniors to adjust to standard backup cameras, partially autonomous vehicles, automatic lights, and other advances in technology. The physical demands of driving can put a strain on seniors’ backs and comfort levels. Additionally, seniors tend to experience a decline in eyesight as they age. The demands of driving may be too much for seniors who aren’t regularly adjusting their eyeglasses or contacts prescription.
Physical Impact of a Crash
The physical effects of a crash can be devastating for senior drivers. To start, they generally have more fragile bones and are overall more prone to injury. A crash that would be minor for a younger driver could leave a senior driver bedridden for weeks or months. Health conditions tend to increase with age, and any pre-existing conditions a senior has may complicate their healing process or lead to further health issues.
You also have to consider the rehabilitative needs of a senior when they are injured. They often live alone or with their spouse who has their own health needs and concerns. When it comes to rehabilitation, senior drivers may need to stay at an assisted living facility until they make a full recovery. This can be expensive and emotionally challenging.
The Mental and Emotional Effects of a Biloxi Collision
While the physical effects of a crash are often considered the most important, you can’t ignore how a collision can mentally and emotionally impact a senior driver. Car accidents often remind senior drivers of their propensity for injury and of how fragile their health truly is. Seniors involved in severe accidents may become depressed and withdrawn, refusing to drive or becoming too scared to drive too far from home.
Post-traumatic stress disorder is a potential outcome of a car accident, particularly when someone is seriously injured. Family members must watch a senior family member’s mental health and emotional responses closely after a collision to ensure that they respond quickly to any changes.
How to Support Senior Drivers
It’s important to support senior drivers, both as involved family members and as a community. Proactive safety measures can help seniors keep their independence for as long as possible and avoid accidents. Regular health checkups are crucial, and they must include vision and hearing tests.
A strong and supportive family unit can also provide support to senior drivers. They may be able to notice any warning signs early and help seniors get the help they need if they can no longer drive safely.
While technology can be challenging for senior drivers, it can also support them as they stay on the road longer. Collision warning systems, automatic braking systems, and lane departure warnings are all useful tools.
Finally, it’s important for legislators to take steps to help senior drivers stay independent while also ensuring that they are safe. More frequent driving tests and license renewals are commonly used tools.
Choose John H. Ruby & Associates for Your Accident Claim
If you’ve been hurt in a crash, it is time to find out if you have a personal injury claim. Let the team at John H. Ruby & Associates lead you through this process. Set up your consultation now by calling us at 502-373-8044 or contacting us online.