Regulating Elderly Drivers - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Regulating Elderly Drivers

Corporal Jerry Neufeld says, "If your first response is I'm afraid to get in the car. There may be problem". Corporal Jerry Neufeld says, "If your first response is I'm afraid to get in the car. There may be problem".

Elderly drivers are under scrutiny, yet again.  After a fatal accident kills two elderly people on Wednesday.  Some seniors say they're just as safe on the streets as anybody else.

Nationwide, drivers 75 and older have the second highest rate for fatal crashes per mile.   In the last five years, there have been 141 traffic fatalities and 18 of those accidents a driver 75 or older was at fault.

Amarillo senior Nita Albright has been driving on the road for 60-years and can't imagine life with out a license. "Here's my keys. I'm not gonna drive. I'm not going to do that", she explains.  Nita and other Amarillo seniors like her, say the difference between older and younger drivers is their values. She said, "Most older people value their life and they don't want to take chances".

Local law enforcement says there are signs if it's time for a senior to hand over the keys.   Corporal Jerry Neufeld says, "If your first response is I'm afraid to get in the car. There may be problem". Neufeld advises concerned family members to take their relative for a drive, watch how they act on the road and look for signs of stress.

If you fill there is a problem an investigation request  can be filled out and turned into the Texas Department of Public Safety.  Cpl. Neufeld says, "The department of public safety can request and require that drivers come back in for a test.

Even seniors say there are ways to determine if your older loved one is hazard on the highway.  "The doctor should be able to diagnose them with the capability of driving. If he says they shouldn't drive then he should report it to the persons children or proper authority," Nita advises.

One thing both seniors and law enforcement agree on is when it comes to getting behind the wheel... No matter what age driving should be treated as a privilege not a right.

 

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