Safety experts urge older drivers to follow five tips to stay safe on the road today
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Elderly drivers have been urged to do some regular exercise each day and try to adapt their driving to avoid journeys which may cause discomfort under the new measures. The proposals by GEM Motoring Assist have been put into place in a bid to reduce the number of people killed on the roads.
The new plan comes into effect after new road casualty figures from the Department for Transport (DfT) reveals elderly drivers could be at more risk.
The data shows there has been a nine percent increase in the number of older drivers being fatally injured in accidents over the past year.
Data shot up from 588 fatal crashes in 2018 to 638 in 2019 in a major year-by-year increase.
To boost road safety and reduce risk factors while behind the wheel, GEM has urged older drivers to follow seven simple measures.
GEM has urged drivers to try and stay fit as much as they can by doing some regular exercise for around 15 to 20 minutes per day.
They also urge drivers to get regular eye tests which may help detect possible problems a lot earlier than they would be normally.
Vision is important for all road users with blurry eyesight potentially leading to drivers missing key road hazards.
Secure a driver MOT
Although a second driving test is not needed at an older age, GEM urges motorists to look at booking an experienced driver assessment,
They say this could help older drivers update their skills behind the wheel in an enjoyable way while also identifying gaps in your knowledge.
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Get a car that suits you
Drivers should ensure that the vehicle they own reflects their own unique style and interests which works well for then.
Cars massively vary in size and performance so something familiar will be better than a brand new and confusing model.
Drivers are also urged to adapt their driving style to avoid journeys which could lead to stress and discomfort.
Reflect on driving
GEM Motoring Assist urges older drivers to try and reflect on their time behind the wheel and leader from any mistakes or near misses.
They urge older drivers to not just pretend they are not happening as this can make a situation a lot worse.
Drivers should listen to the thoughts of their family members and friends which may have concerns over certain areas.
GEM urges elderly drivers to plan their journey before setting off and factor in plenty of breaks while behind the wheel.
This can freshener drivers up during long journeys and reduce fatigue behind the wheel.
GEM chief executive Neil Worth said: “We are committed to playing our part in reducing the number of people killed and seriously injured on the UK’s roads, regardless of how old they may be or how they use the roads.
“Today two-thirds of people aged 70 and over still hold a driving licence, compared with less than 40 per cent in the mid-1990s.
So with more people staying mobile for longer, it’s vital we take the time to understand better their vulnerabilities and the situations where they may be at higher risk.
“The process of ageing is different for every single person. That’s why GEM is keen to encourage senior drivers to reflect on their own driving, to understand where they may be experiencing difficulty, and to know where to get practical advice.
Mr Worth adds: “Equally useful is a commitment from every driver – regardless of age and experience – to be willing to reflect on the risks they may face, and the risks they pose to others.
“The best drivers are willing to recognise the situations that may lead to increased risk, and to ask where, when and why they occur.
“Learning from those situations, perhaps with some expert help, is a good way for a senior driver to stay as safe as possible for as long as possible.”
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