Owning a vehicle and being a driver has many responsibilities. With so many others on the road, the dangers of getting into an accident are very real, particularly for seniors. Many experts recommend that seniors take a safety course to stay up to date on best driving practices. Not to mention, taking one of these courses could help drivers save money on their auto insurance rates.
Safe driving courses
Safe or defensive driving courses for seniors are intended to make drivers better, but are often required of those with moving violations. Insurance providers will often provide drivers who participate in these courses with a discount. While seniors may need to pay for these courses, they are generally available in local areas and are affordable. In addition AARP members may be eligible for a discount for some of these classes.
Driving risks for seniors
Taking a safety driving course is a great idea for drivers of all ages. However, seniors may be at a bigger risk for certain driving hazards compared to other age groups. For this reason, a safety driving course can lower the risk of death and bodily injury for seniors involved in a car accident. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, physical and cognitive changes that come with aging can pose a higher risk of getting into an accident. Arthritis can reduce reaction time while poor eyesight can make it more difficult to see oncoming dangers.
Senior driving tips
Beyond taking a driver safety course, seniors should plan out their routes for their destination before they leave home. While on the road, seniors should also leave a safe driving distance between themselves and the vehicle in front of them, which will give them more time to react if the other car suddenly slows down or comes to a stop. Of course, all drivers should limit distractions in a vehicle such as loud music or other noise, cell phones or eating while driving. These interruptions can greatly increase the risks of getting into a serious automobile accident. Because there are some risks that are specific to senior drivers, it is recommended that individuals in this age group get their vision checked by a doctor on an annual basis. Furthermore, seniors could also look into alternatives to driving such as carpooling with a friend or using public transportation to get where they need to go.
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