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Are Elderly Florida Drivers At Higher Risk of Injury in Automobile Accidents?

According to statistics released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), in 2004, 3,355 car occupants ages 65 and older were involved in fatal car accidents. More than 177,000 seniors aged 65 and older across the country suffered injuries in car accidents in 2005. In 2004, more than 28 million licensed drivers in this nation were 65 years of age or older.

In Florida, the rate of car accidents among older drivers is an especial concern. Many senior citizens choose to retire in Florida or travel to the state in order to enjoy a vacation or some time in the sun.

Across the country, the rate of fatality and injury in car accidents is a concern. Older car occupants and drivers who are in car accidents can face longer recovery times than younger passengers and drivers. Hip fractures and bone fractures may take longer to heal. In cases where an elderly person is already having difficulty with mobility, nonfatal injuries such as burn injuries and brain injuries can prove incapacitating. Injuries that to younger drivers might require extended recovery time might prove fatal to older victims. The CDC has reported that older drivers are more likely than younger drivers to die from their injuries after a car accident.

Another problem is that elderly drivers are sometimes blamed for car crashes. Some people feel that elderly drivers pose a risk on the roads. Statistics do not support this idea. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, the motor vehicle death rate among drivers ages 70 and over has remained steady, at roughly 23 per 100,000, for more than ten years.

Some studies have suggested that age-related decreases in physical mobility, vision, and cognitive functions can affect the driving ability of some drivers, but there is no conclusive evidence that the elderly make poorer drivers than their younger counterparts. In fact, the CDC has released findings that show elderly adults are more likely to wear seat belts than other age groups except young children. CDC has also released findings that elderly drivers are more likely to drive only when driving conditions are safe and tend to drive fewer miles that other motorists. The CDC has also released studies that prove that elderly drivers are less likely to drink and drive than their younger counterparts. All of this suggests that while older drivers are more likely to suffer serious injury and even death in car crashes, they are less likely to cause accidents.


If an elderly loved one has been injured in a car crash, contact a qualified Florida lawyer. A good Florida attorney can ensure that your loved one gets the best medical care and help possible under the law. Call 1- 800-535-2962 (1 800 5 FLAXMAN) for a no-cost, no-obligation consultation to discuss your options.