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Aging motorists need to reassess skills

Posted On Tue, December 7, 2010

As America's population continues to age, the number of elderly motorists rises. Older drivers may have more experience on the road, but their reflexes and mobility may not be what they once were.

In conjunction with National Older Driver Safety Awareness Week, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation is urging people to discuss driving with elderly motorists. According to PennDOT data, more than 16,000 motor vehicle accidents involved an elderly driver last year.

PennDOT Secretary Allen Biehler says it's important for loved ones to have an ongoing dialogue with older drivers.

"It's a conversation that most people are not anxious to have, but striking the right balance between safety on our roadways and the mobility of older drivers is a very important subject," says Biehler.

Some elderly drivers may benefit from taking a driver's education course. Such programs are offered at a variety of locations around the country. Adapting a vehicle for a senior driver may also be helpful. It's important for elderly motorists to know their limits to help prevent accidents and higher auto insurance rates. 

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