Quincy crash a reminder of the risks faced by elderly drivers

An elderly woman driving on Quincy Avenue was hit and sent to Boston Medical Center on May 12. This local accident reported on by the Patriot Ledger is an example of how dangers faced by senior motorists. If you are an elderly driver yourself, it is important for you to stay safe on the road to avoid auto collisions like this one.

As you age, you may gradually go through physical and mental changes that directly affect your driving. Here are some tips for staying safe as an elderly driver.

Check your vision

Your eyesight may decline over the years. Make sure your vision is good enough for safe driving by getting a vision evaluation every year. If you wear contact lenses or glasses, ask your optometrist or eye doctor if you need an updated prescription. Try to limit your driving to daytime if you have difficulty seeing in the dark.

Check your hearing

It is a good idea to ensure that you hear well enough to safely operate your car. If you cannot hear well, you may not be able to notice unforeseen situations quickly enough to react. Get your hearing evaluated every few years and get a hearing aid if necessary. Be alert for flashing lights of police cars or ambulances as you may not be able to hear sirens from a distance.

Evaluate physical changes

Your body undergoes many changes as you get older. If you think any new stiffness or pain is affecting your driving, see your doctor. Make sure your car has power steering, power brakes and big mirrors. You may even want to exercise more to improve your overall health and alertness to drive easier.

If you take these proactive steps, you can avoid accidents like the one on Quincy Avenue. Getting into an accident can cause serious injuries, perhaps especially for elderly people. If you get into a collision, make sure you contact a personal injury lawyer.

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