Over 100 Years Of Collective Experience

Older adults and traffic crash injuries

On Behalf of | Apr 26, 2024 | Car Accidents |

With age, bodies may become more fragile, making people more susceptible to injuries in the event of a car accident. Older adults are at a higher risk of sustaining serious injuries due to factors such as decreased bone density, slower reaction times and medical conditions that can impact their ability to recover.

To help older adults stay safe on the road and prevent car accident injuries, it is important to review some key tips and precautions.

Health checks and fitness

Regular health check-ups are essential for older adults to monitor their overall health. This can help them address any medical conditions that may affect their driving ability. Vision and hearing tests, as well as evaluations of cognitive function, can help identify potential issues that may impact driving safety. Sadly, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that nearly 200,000 older adults were treated in emergency departments due to traffic accident injuries during 2020.

Maintaining physical fitness and strength can help older adults react more quickly in emergency situations and reduce the risk of injury in a car accident. Engaging in regular exercise and activities that promote balance and coordination can improve overall mobility and reduce the likelihood of falls. Older adults may benefit from driving during daylight hours, avoiding busy traffic times and limiting long-distance trips to reduce fatigue and stress.

Safety features and distractions

Ensure that your vehicle is equipped with safety features such as airbags, antilock brakes and electronic stability control. These technologies can help mitigate the impact of a collision and reduce the severity of injuries in the event of an accident. Distractions, such as using a cell phone, eating or adjusting the radio while driving, can significantly increase the risk of a car accident. Older adults should focus on the road and avoid distractions to maintain safe driving practices. Use GPS navigation systems to help you stay on track and minimize the risk of getting lost or stressed while driving.

For older adults who may have difficulty driving or feel unsafe on the road, consider alternative transportation options such as public transit, ridesharing services or carpooling with family or friends. Remember, it is never too late to prioritize safety and take steps to protect yourself and others while behind the wheel.