The Effects of Age on Driving
This chapter suggests that the "problem" of older drivers has been over-stated. Research suggests that the social isolation which elderly people often experience after giving up their car can lead to depression and accelerated health decline. In 2014, a multidisciplinary group called the Older Drivers Task Force produced a report summarising the evidence on the riskiness of elderly drivers in the UK. Elderly drivers are more likely to enter the accident statistics than younger drivers, merely because they are more likely to die or be seriously hurt in any accidents in which they are involved. Perhaps elderly drivers have difficulties with allocating their attention effectively to different parts of the visual field. A number of studies have shown that elderly drivers show similar scanning patterns to younger drivers, but they detect more hazards. Research suggests that most elderly people are willing to give up driving once diagnosed with dementia.