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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Study Says Elderly and Young Adults Equally Vulnerable on the Road

In a study conducted by U.K. researchers, it was revealed that what we believed to be the most prone to fatal accident drivers on the road (the elderly) are just equally vulnerable as drivers who are in their twenties.

According to the study led by Jonathan Rolison at the University of Plymouth in U.K., and published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society, the risk of dying from driving was equal for other elderly drivers and young adults.

During the said study, researchers reviewed police records on all fatal road accidents that were reported from 1989 until 2009. Apparently, they discovered that out of 100 million road trips that end in fatality, thirteen were under the age of 29 while out of 100 million road trips, fourteen of them were over the age of 70.

In 2009, there were 1,138 vehicle accident fatalities recorded and based on research, one out of ten of all  those deaths were over the age of 70 while one out of four were  younger drivers. Apparently, elderly drivers can still be accounted for fewer vehicle accident deaths.

Either for drivers or passengers, risks are at their peak on both ends of the age range and lower among middle-aged drivers.

Also, researchers reviewed statistics for pedestrian accident deaths and discovered that the risk of being killed as a pedestrian was five times higher for elderly than for young adults.

In his statement, Rolison claimed that evaluating whether the elderly can drive is very important. However, the same eventually leads to driving policies that are getting tighter and stricter. Therefore, people are being distracted from the fact that the elderly are at risk as pedestrians.

Rolison further explained the when it rains, elderly drivers usually prefer to stay at home, while younger motorists wouldn’t mind going out to drive despite the inclement weather. Now, this is clearly an example why elderly people are regarded as ideal drivers.

Consequently, the study revealed that disputes over the ability of elderly drivers to safely drive are baseless and without merit since statistically, it was proven that elderly drivers’ ability to drive safely is not far different from the younger ones, commented by a Los Angeles injury attorney.


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