Age-Related Traffic Crashes and Senior Drivers
Many different factors can come into play in a motor vehicle collision, from fatigue to distracted driving to alcohol intoxication. In addition, age can sometimes be a factor in a car crash. While most of us think of a very young driver — a newly licensed teenager, for example — when we think about age as a factor in a wreck, it is important to know that older adults can also be at greater risk of a crash, as well. Although older adults have often been driving for many years, age-related factors can affect their ability to drive safely. A recent article in Bankrate discusses senior driver facts as of 2023, and our Shreveport car crash lawyers want to say more about those facts and how they impact collisions in Louisiana.
Cognitive and Physical Decline Leads to More Crashes and Injuries
Not only are older adults at a potentially greater risk of being involved in a collision due to cognitive and physical decline, but they are also at increased risk of a more serious injury in the event that a crash does occur. As the Bankrate article emphasizes, hundreds of thousands of older adults are injured in motor vehicle collisions each year. Indeed, in 2020 alone, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that more 233,000 were injured in wrecks. Sometimes those crashes are their fault, and sometimes they are unable to avoid them due to age-related changes. In many circumstances, injuries occur or are more severe due to physical decline.
What are the cognitive and physical decline issues that can result in a higher rate of motor vehicle collisions involving elderly drivers? Bankrate cites “age-related changes impact driving abilities, like medication side effects, reduced reaction time, and impaired vision.” Sometimes seniors may not be the cause of a crash, but their reduced reaction time might make it more difficult to avoid a collision caused by another motorist’s negligence. In other circumstances, fatigue or drowsiness caused by medication, or difficulty seeing, might result in a devastating collision with another vehicle, or with a bicyclist or pedestrian in Shreveport or elsewhere.
Common Causes of Crashes Involving Older Adults
When the fault of a senior driver plays a role in a crash, what are the most common causes? According to the article, the following are cited most frequently:
- Failure to yield right-of-way;
- Failure to surveil the surroundings;
- Misjudging the speed of another vehicle; and/or
- Misjudging the gap between the senior’s vehicle and another vehicle.
Contact a Shreveport Auto Injury Lawyer
If you were injured in a collision, or if a loved one was seriously injured or killed in a crash, it is essential for you to get in touch with a lawyer who can help you to file a claim and hold the at-fault party accountable. One of the experienced Shreveport auto injury attorneys at Rice & Kendig, LLC can talk with you today about your claim. It may be possible to seek compensation through an insurance claim, or you may be eligible to file a lawsuit against the liable party.
Our firm will obtain necessary medical records and police reports to help support your case. Do not hesitate to contact us to find out more about how we can help you to seek the compensation you need in the aftermath of a Louisiana motor vehicle collision.