Driving is a fast-paced and complex challenge. You must constantly digest information about roads, traffic, markings, signals, and the car itself. You have to decide what to do with all that information and act quickly. Most drivers make twenty decisions every mile.

That's one reason why aging affects a person’s ability to drive. Another is diminished eyesight. We receive most of the information we need to drive safely from our eyes.

Aging and the eyes:

  • A sixty-year-old driver requires ten times as much light in order to see clearly as a nineteen-year-old.
  • We lose ability to focus as we age. Drivers over 40 can take 52 percent longer to focus.
  • We are more sensitive to glare. A fifty-five-year-old can take eight times as long to recover from glare as a sixteen-year-old.
  • It takes longer for older drivers to see some colors—especially red, the color of brake lights.
  • We lose some of our ability to judge how fast cars are moving as we lose depth perception and peripheral vision.

So what can you do?

  • Get an eye exam every two years. You can slow the decline of your vision.
  • If you have trouble seeing at night, drive only during daylight hours.
  • Be more aware and turn your head frequently to augment your peripheral vision.
  • Keep headlights, mirrors, and windshields clean.
  • Keep mirrors clean and adjusted.
  • Get a bigger rear-view mirror.
  • Don't let anything distract you from looking at the road.

Hearing is also important in sensing your environment while you drive.
After the age of 65, about one third of us experience hearing loss. After 75, about half of us have hearing loss.

You need to hear well when you drive. You need to listen for sirens, horns, and railroad warnings, among other things. Hearing loss can also be treated, so get regular checkups!

With regular medical attention, we can mitigate the effects of aging on our senses as we drive. Without medical attention, you can significantly increase the danger to yourself and others as you drive.

The Ormond Beach law firm of Johnson & Gilbert, P.A. understands the serious nature of automobile accidents and the injuries that can result. Our firm will investigate the causes of any accident and pursue appropriate legal action.

Call a Florida car accident attorney today at 800-556-8890 for a free and confidential consultation if you have been involved in a car accident.