Operating a vehicle gives you a sense of freedom, and no matter your age, you should be able to continue driving your car. However, if your vision or hearing decline with age and as your reaction time slows, it may be time to consider giving up driving both for your own safety and for the safety of others.
Car accidents involving elderly drivers are often deadlier than those involving teenage drivers. If you’ve been hit by an elderly driver, an attorney with experience in elder car accidents can help you seek compensation for your injuries and other damages.
Why Elderly Drivers Are Often Considered More Dangerous
Many physical and mental changes happen as a person ages. Unfortunately, some of these changes may affect how safely an elderly person can operate a vehicle. Here are some of the common changes seen in elderly drivers:
- Slower reaction time, especially when reacting to sudden stops or unexpected road conditions.
- Poor vision, which is not always fully corrected by prescription lenses. Cataracts, glaucoma, or other medical conditions may affect an elderly driver’s vision.
- Confusion or disorientation, which can occur at any time without warning. Elderly citizens may find it more difficult to comprehend the rules of the road.
The rules of operating a motor vehicle apply to all drivers, no matter their age. If an elderly driver is experiencing any of the above conditions, he or she should think twice before getting behind the wheel.
Seeking Legal Help after a Collision involving an Elderly Driver
If you have been injured after an accident involving an elderly driver, you should contact an attorney with experience in similar cases. Just like any other car accident case, your lawyer will build a case to prove the negligence of the other driver.
Car accident claims involving elderly drivers are treated the same as other collision cases. The age of the driver is not usually important, unless it can be proven that the accident was a result of an age-related condition.
Evidence Gathered in an Elder Car Accident Case
Proving negligence of the other driver is the goal of your attorney. He or she will collect all the evidence from your accident to build your case. Some of the evidence that may be used includes:
- Police reports, which should be made before leaving the scene. Always call for emergency help after any accident, no matter how minor.
- Medical reports, which will prove your injuries were the result of the accident. These records are also needed to determine economic damages.
- Witness statements from any person who saw the accident firsthand. These statements are very valuable in determining liability.
- Expert witnesses who may be called to explain how the age of the elderly driver may have played a role in the accident.
The more evidence your lawyer is able to accumulate, the easier it will be for him or her to prove liability as well as to support your claims for damages.