Older adults can take steps to stay safer on the roads.
WEST PALM BEACH, FLA. (November 30, 2018) –
Mayor Jeri Muoio and the City of West Palm Beach seek to eliminate preventable injuries and fatalities on our roads through the Vision Zero initiative. Adopted unanimously by the City Commission in August, Vision Zero seeks to achieve the vision of zero fatalities on our streets through education, engineering, and enforcement. As a part of the initiative, Vision Zero is promoting safety among older drivers by recognizing Older Driver Safety Awareness Week from December 3-7, 2018.
In 2015, more than 260,000 older adults were injured and more than 6,800 died in traffic crashes.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), while driving helps order adults stay independent, persons ages 65 and older are at an increased risk of being injured or killed in a crash due to frailty, underlying medical problems, and certain medical problems such as heart disease, dementia, sleep disorders, and limited hearing and vision. Medicines may also affect driving safety.
The CDC notes these facts:
- One in 6 drivers in the United States are 65 years or older.
- Older adult drivers are more than twice as likely to report having a medical problem that makes it difficult to travel as compared to drivers ages 24‒64.
- Four in 5 older adults take one or more medications daily. Physical changes that occur with age can change the way the body reacts to medicines which causes more side effects and affecting the ability to concentrate and drive safely.
The CDC offers these safety tips:
- Discuss your medical problems with your doctor to determine if they might affect your driving.
- Discuss stopping or changing your medications with your pharmacist or doctor if you experience any side effects that could interfere with safe driving such as blurry vision, dizziness, sleepiness, confusion, fatigue, and/or loss of consciousness.
- Have your eyes checked by an eye doctor at least once a year. Wear glasses and corrective lenses as directed.
- Plan your route before you drive.
- Consider potential alternatives to driving, such as riding with a friend, using public transit, or car ride services.
To learn more about Vision Zero, please visit: http://wpb.org/News-Video/Archive-News/CITY-OF-WEST-PALM-BEACH-ADOPTS-VISION-ZERO-SAFE-ST