There are more older drivers out on our roads than ever before, according to a recent study by the RAC Foundation.
It is claimed that there are more than four million older drivers aged 70 and over who hold a full, valid UK driving licence. And the oldest licenced driver is a 107-year-old woman. Statistics show that drivers aged over 55 are the least likely to be involved in an accident – but the chances of being seriously injured if involved in one increases from the age of 65.As a Trust My Garage member here at Guide Bridge MOT, we aim to keep all drivers safe on the road, especially if they are more vulnerable due to age-related health deterioration.Obviously, if you have a medical condition or disability that affects your fitness to drive then you must inform the DVLA straight away. If you are still fit and safe to drive, we want to ensure that your car doesn’t let you down.
So, what can you do to help keep you safe on the road?
*Check your eyesight.
In order to drive safely, you must be able to see properly. This may seem like common sense, but sometimes you may not realise that your eyesight has worsened over time, and if you can’t read a car number plate from 20 metres – with or without corrected vision – then you should consult your optician straight away.
*Don’t feel pressurised by other road users.
It’s easy to feel intimidated by a driver following too closely behind you, but don’t go any faster than you feel comfortable with doing, and never above the speed limit. If you need to slow down a bit to give yourself that extra bit of time to react when coming up to a junction or other hazard, then you do that. Don’t become a reckless or dangerous driver because of feeling pressured to go that extra bit faster.
*Visit your doctor to resolve any niggling health complaints.
So, if your neck is giving you discomfort and you may have difficulty in turning your head, visit your doctor who may be able to show you some exercises to ease it a little bit.
*Buy accessories and adaptations for your car to make it easier to drive.
If you are worried about forgetting directions, then a Satnav will make your navigation considerably easier and can save you from unnecessary worry. If you do suffer with a stiff neck, then you can attach stick-on blind-spot mirrors to your door mirrors, so you know what’s coming up beside you. And, you can use coloured stickers to mark different speeds on your speedometer, so you can clearly see how fast you’re travelling.
There are plenty of tips we can give you on keeping safe on the roads
But nothing beats ensuring your car is properly maintained. It goes without saying that years ago cars were designed much simpler than they are now. The days are mostly gone where you could tinker about under the bonnet and replace the oil or old spark plugs. Now, many modern cars’ mechanics are computer controlled and diagnostics and repairs can only be carried out by a trained mechanic using the latest tools and equipment. We will only charge you for work completed and parts supplied and fitted – we don’t include any hidden costs, or hike up the prices. And we use up-to-date technical information, techniques and tooling; always following your vehicle’s service schedule.This means that you will go home satisfied that we have treated you and your vehicle with respect. So, if you feel that your car could do with having a good looking over – if only to give you peace of mind when travelling