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Is it time for your father to hand over the car keys?

There is a sense of freedom that comes along with the privilege of driving. We start when we’re teenagers and don’t really give it another thought. Then, one day, your 78-year-old father is cited for an accident that puts him and the driver of the other car in the hospital. You start to wonder if it is time for him to hand over the car keys.

According to The Center for Disease Control (CDC), nearly 7,500 senior adults aged 65 and older were killed in traffic crashes in 2020. This means that 20 senior adults were killed each day.

Signs that your father shouldn’t be driving anymore

You should definitely talk with your father if you observe any of these behaviors when he drives:

  • Straddling or wandering across lanes.
  • Making sudden lane changes that cut off other drivers.
  • Missing stop signs and traffic signals.
  • Confusion while driving.
  • Braking, stopping or accelerating abruptly without reason.
  • Accelerating when they mean to brake.
  • Difficulty seeing pedestrians, objects or other vehicles that are in plain sight.
  • Driving much slower than the speed limit.
  • Getting lost in familiar places.
  • Driving the wrong way against traffic.
  • Failing to signal or turning left when signaling a right turn.
  • Increased incidences of close calls.
  • Receipt of two or more traffic citations or warnings in the past two years.
  • New dents and scrapes on their car or surrounding objects, such as fences or mailboxes.

As we age, our reflexes and reaction times slow down. This can be caused by illness, medication, or the natural process of aging and can make driving dangerous for seniors and for those with whom they share the road.

What if I’m injured by a senior driver?

If you have been injured by an elderly driver, you are entitled to compensation for your medical bills and damages.

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