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Libertyville car accident lawyer elderly driversOn Wednesday, September 28, 2018, a 78-year-old woman was fatally injured when her vehicle crashed into a building near the Lincolnwood Mall. According to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office, the accident was caused by a medical condition that led to the driver accelerating into a parked car and ultimately colliding with the building. 

The accident was a reminder of the increased dangers that elderly drivers face every time they get behind the steering wheel. If you or your family members have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, finding competent legal representation can be key to you and your family’s recovery. 

Why Elderly Drivers Face Increased Risk 

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), elderly drivers are in greater danger of being injured in car accidents for a number of reasons. Older drivers may be affected by diminished vision, reduced reaction time, and symptoms of medication that can impact balance and cognition. 

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motor vehicle accidents, Lake County personal injury attorneys, elderly drivers, fatal car accident, car accident statisticsAn elderly Lisle man suffered fatal injuries after a collision late Tuesday night on Ogden Avenue. The accident occurred when the man, who was driving a blue Nissan Rogue, crossed into the other lane of traffic and collided with a black Acura. Both Acura passengers remain in critical condition. The fatal accident serves a somber reminder of the risks elderly drivers face, as the 74-year-old man falls within an age demographic of drivers that disproportionately face risk of fatality while driving.

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), elderly drivers face higher risks of fatal motor vehicle accidents than all age demographics other than teen drivers. In 2015 alone 240,000 elderly drivers suffered fatal injuries throughout the United States. If you or a member of your family are injured in an automobile collision, contact our experienced team of Waukegan personal injury attorneys to discuss your case today.

Why Are Elderly Drivers at Risk?

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Illinois accident attorney, Illinois personal injury lawyer, Illinoiscar crash lawyer,In 2014, there were 46.2 million Americans who were 65 years or older, and this number is projected to rise. With an influx of older drivers on the road, many are concerned about a potential increase in car accidents. According to the American Automobile Association, drivers over the age of 65 are twice as likely as their middle-aged counterparts to die in a car accident.

What you Should Look out for

Unfortunately, many senior drivers do not wish to give up driving because it gives them a sense of independence. If you have elderly family members who drives, you should look for these signs that suggest they are having difficulty in operating a vehicle:

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elderly-driverThe roadway can be a dangerous place for anyone and everyone. While certain demographics and driving behaviors tend to contribute to collision trends, the reality is car accident statistics do not discriminate. Everyone is at risk for causing or being involved in a crash. Just as young drivers face certain challenges as they learn to acquire good driving skills and the importance of avoiding bad habits, such as distracted driving, older drivers are presented with their own set of challenges when behind the wheel. Natural Challenges Natural changes that typically come with aging, such as vision changes and physical or mental limitations can, and often do, cause a shift in driving skills, making operating a vehicle riskier and more intimidating. The National Highway Safety Traffic Administration reported that over 5,000 people age 65 and older were killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes in 2012, which was an increase from previous years. Aging does not automatically equate to the need to give up driving. It does mean adopting a few new habits and being realistic about dangerous changes in driving habits, however. Recognizing and acknowledging the effects getting older can have on your driving skills is the first step to safer driving as you age. What You Can Do Whether you are beginning to notice changes in your driving abilities as the years go on or you are noticing changes in one of your loved ones, take note of the following driving safety tips to increase your chances of preventing a collision: Talk it out: If you are concerned about changes in your driving skills, it is important to talk things out with a trusted friend or family member. Talking about any decline in health is never easy, but expressing your concerns and thoughts about the matter with someone you love and trust can go a long way when it comes to acceptance. It also helps to brainstorm with someone to come up with ideas for how you can protect yourself behind the wheel and improve your level of safety as you age. Assess your physical health: Assessing your vision, physical fitness, and your reaction time and reflexes can give you a good indicator of where you stand when it comes to operating a vehicle. Stay up to date with your doctor visits so you can proactively manage any vision or health issues, and thoroughly voice your concerns to your doctor so you can understand the nature of your limitations. Consider new boundaries: Creating new boundaries for your driving patterns and habits can be an excellent way to combat risk on the roadway as you age. Consider eliminating driving at night or during certain times of day, such as during rush-hour, or make arrangements to drive with a friend when you need to run errands around town. Driving with another passenger can be helpful, as it gives you a second set of eyes on the roadway. If you or a loved one have been injured in an auto accident due to aging driver, speak with an experienced Lake County car accident attorney to make sure your rights are protected. Call Salvi & Maher, L.L.C. today at 847-662-3303 to schedule a free consultation.

Sources:

http://www.nhtsa.gov/Driving+Safety/Older+Drivers

http://www.nhtsa.gov/people/injury/olddrive/Driving%20Safely%20Aging%20Web/index.html

Illinois personal injury lawyer, Illinois wrongful death attorney, Illinois car accident lawyer,The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that there are over 36 million drivers over the age of 65 who are on U.S. roads today. However, senior drivers are also more at risk of being injured – or killed – in a motor vehicle accident than younger drivers.

Each year, there are approximately 5,500 senior drivers killed in motor vehicle crashes – 15 fatalities every day.  Another 215,000 are injured every year. That is almost 600 elderly drivers injured per day.

Issues with older drivers typically begin around the age of 70. In fact, in 2013, over 4,000 of the elderly motor vehicle fatalities were 70 years of age or older. The dangers increase as drivers enter their eighties. The reasons for these increased numbers are linked to a senior’s increased risk of medical complications, as well as their increased risk for sustaining an injury in a crash, compared to a younger driver’s risk.

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