ABSTRACT

The majority of roadways in the United States and most other countries are more than 50 years old. The U.S. interstate roadway system, for example, celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2006 (Federal Highway Administration, FHWA, 2008b). When these roadways were being built, life expectancy in the United States was only 68 years (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC, 2003), an age that today is considered to be barely older adulthood. It is therefore not surprising that roadways were generally designed to accommodate the driving capabilities of yesterday’s “85th percentile driver”; that is, one who is relatively young and healthy by today’s standard (Oxley, Fildes, Corben, & Langford, 2006). Given the types of problems older drivers have on the road, it seems clear that improved roadways can play a key role in enhancing safe driving among older adults.