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Old 02-28-2007, 08:05 PM
 
1,343 posts, read 4,667,661 times
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We all know our senior citizens value their independence, but are some of them capable of driving, with diminished eye-sight, response time & meds?

Public transportation is limited to major cities.

What brought this to mind today was being behind a REALLY old man in a huge SUV trying to navigate the post office parking lot. Poor guy. I have less sympathy for the crabby old witches claiming a spot and DARE you to hit them.

Question is: Should drivers be tested after a certain age?
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Old 02-28-2007, 08:55 PM
 
Location: NE Florida
9,362 posts, read 22,762,535 times
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That testing issue is touchy. They may not drive well, but seniors are consistent voters! In FL you can report an elderly driver to the state and they will send them a notice to be retested.

My friend finds "mystery dings" on her mom's car all the time.

In south Florida I had a theory that many of the drivers had died at the wheel while driving, but their car still had gas in the tank, so the car just kept on going!

Tonight I was driving and this huge tank-like car was creeping along in a 45mph zone. Sticking up above the driver-side head rest was a tiny puff of white hair...
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Old 02-28-2007, 09:21 PM
 
Location: Orange County x 2
99 posts, read 505,452 times
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Absolutely. Your natural reflexes are diminished with age. A retest should always be done after some time. I've witnessed many times before senior citizens making the most obvious mistakes: running red lights, crosswalks, bumping vehicles and going the wrong way.

In some countries they test your psych abilities and medical condition to make sure you are fit to drive. You must pass both exams. After the license expires you must do a review. Here in the US you must only pass a series of questions. Should it be more strict? You bet. How likely? Not likely.

Driving is a privilege in which everyone should enjoy. We know the risks and I'm sure some seniors know that as well. In order to solve this problem and have a win-win situation is to really invest in public transportation.
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Old 02-28-2007, 09:40 PM
 
1,343 posts, read 4,667,661 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OC2OC View Post
.

Driving is a privilege in which everyone should enjoy. We know the risks and I'm sure some seniors know that as well. In order to solve this problem and have a win-win situation is to really invest in public transportation.
Therein lies the problem. Most of Florida is "sprawl." Cars are necessary, especially in the "suburban" areas, which is pretty much all of Florida. How many seniors live downtown anywhere?
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Old 02-28-2007, 09:43 PM
 
Location: NE Florida
9,362 posts, read 22,762,535 times
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Yes, but what is the magical age at which someone should be tested? I have met 80 years olds with sharp reflexes and 65 year olds who scare me!

Where is public transportation a viable option in Florida? It doesn't exist.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OC2OC View Post
Absolutely. Your natural reflexes are diminished with age. A retest should always be done after some time. I've witnessed many times before senior citizens making the most obvious mistakes: running red lights, crosswalks, bumping vehicles and going the wrong way.

In some countries they test your psych abilities and medical condition to make sure you are fit to drive. You must pass both exams. After the license expires you must do a review. Here in the US you must only pass a series of questions. Should it be more strict? You bet. How likely? Not likely.

Driving is a privilege in which everyone should enjoy. We know the risks and I'm sure some seniors know that as well. In order to solve this problem and have a win-win situation is to really invest in public transportation.
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Old 02-28-2007, 09:48 PM
 
Location: Heartland Florida
9,324 posts, read 23,754,287 times
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Bad drivers come in all ages. It was an 18 year old who rammed into me in my own front yard. I am very happy that instead of using the shovel to remove the fallen tree I was in my Bobcat loader. Otherwise I most likely would have been dead.
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Old 02-28-2007, 10:39 PM
 
Location: Orange County x 2
99 posts, read 505,452 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hereinfla View Post
Where is public transportation a viable option in Florida? It doesn't exist.
True. It doesn't exist. It should and it must. I currently live in the greater LA area- the car capital of the world. I've actually tried once going to LAX (airport) from my home by using public transportation. First I took a bus, hopped on the metrolink rail and then took another bus transfer to the airport. Half way through the process I ran out of expletives to describe the system (and the smell). It's a nice effort but poorly executed. It's not too late to implement metro in some cities. The sprawl also happens because there isn't a centralized transport system. I'd bet that if you had a nice public transport route with metro/bus lines, people would tend to be near them and not choose to live so far.
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Old 03-01-2007, 04:20 AM
 
Location: on an island
13,382 posts, read 40,856,289 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OC2OC View Post
. The sprawl also happens because there isn't a centralized transport system. I'd bet that if you had a nice public transport route with metro/bus lines, people would tend to be near them and not choose to live so far.
I agree. In a state with resources such as Disney World's rapid transit, you'd think some of that kind of concept would rub off just a little bit.

I also agree that bad drivers come in all ages, but that stereotype of the stubborn old guy going 40 in the highway's fast lane for miles and miles with his left turn signal on does have a bit of truth. I've seen and lived it with my father in law.
Just the other day here, an elderly gentleman drove his Cadillac off the boat ramp and drowned in 7 feet of water. This is just a local boat ramp, not the marina. Nobody is exactly sure what happened, he might have had a stroke or heart attack. Or he might simply have been confused.

I don't know of what a cut-off testing time should be. I do know that I began wearing glasses to drive a couple years ago, and I hope I quit driving before I become a danger to myself or others.
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Old 03-01-2007, 05:21 AM
 
1,608 posts, read 9,134,221 times
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Personally I'd rather take the licenses out of the hands of teenagers than senior citizens. Teens by far are the most dangerous group of drivers out there. And that's with their eyes functioning good!

Many seniors drive just fine, just because they drive slower in many cases shouldn't be a issue. They are more cautious.

Give me a senior driving next to me over a teen anyday!
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Old 03-01-2007, 07:57 AM
 
Location: downtown Sarasota
4,723 posts, read 12,393,780 times
Reputation: 2029
My mother, who just turned 81, is selling her home to move to the other Coast (East) to go into assisted living. She backed out of the garage & hit the rental car of the prospective buyers who had just come to look at the house with the RE agent. My mother just kept going.

I got a call at work from mom's trustee who had been notified by the realtor of the situation. The police had been called as it was a rental car. Mom did come back (claimed dog had needed to go to vet as it was having a "spell".) They could not give her a ticket for "leaving the scene of an accident" as it was her own driveway.

Police report was unbelieveably incomplete & listed no damages....

Since it's a no fault state...whatever that means, mom's insurance will cover it....

...But what about the fact that she, "just kept going"?????

What might she hit next & disregard & just keep going?
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