The Safety of Elderly Drivers: Yesterday's Young in Today's Traffic

Front Cover
John Peter Rothe
Transaction Publishers - Social Science - 435 pages

By the turn of the century, the elderly will comprise about 20 percent of the population in North" America, and 28 percent of those who drive. Place this percentage in high-powered automobiles, and the need for planning and policy development becomes evident. Most standard research on elderly drivers has not gone beyond gathering data on specific situations or characteristics. This book rises beyond simple statistical presentation. It blends sociological insight with statistical detail to produce an absorbing description of the elderly drivers' daily lives, driving styles, experiences with accident and injury, social relationships, and life aspirations. It also describes areas of neglect: imagined and real health problems, driving exposure and traffic violations, accidents, and loss of self-esteem. It presents in-depth accounts of the trauma of loss of license and the importance of the automobile for sustaining mental, physical, and social well-being. The self-imposed or self-defined rules elderly drivers use to navigate traffic or compensate for physical frailities are described in depth.

"The Safety of Elderly Drivers "includes penetrating comments from elderly drivers who have been involved in serious accidents, and from random elderly drivers speaking for their generation of drivers. Integrating statistical findings based on Motor Vehicle Department accident data and survey data with comprehensive interviews and discussions with elderly drivers, the book provides an emperically grounded, in-depth view of the elderly driver today. Rothe summarizes theories and models of aging, along with past research on elderly drivers, projecting what the future may hold if present trends in medicine, housing, politics, migration, and mass transit continue. It closes with a series of recommendations for future traffic planning. This book will be of interest to policymakers concerned with traffic safety, as well as social scientists and others interested in gerontological issues. It is the latest in a series on traffic safety sponsored by the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia in Canada.


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s book is great for people wanting to know if elderly drivers should not be on the road and what steps to take to ensure their safety. Very good read.

Selected pages


Growing Older
The Elderly Under the Conceptual Microscope
Other Writers on Elderly Drivers
The Research Schemata
Different Ages Different Risks The Realm of Accident Statistics
Trends Factors and Patterns
Victims of Serious Crashes
Appendix to Chapter 2
Appendix to Chapter 6 Interview Survey
Tables B1 to B48
Appendix to Chapter 7 Focus Group Discussions
Discussion Guide
Tables C1 to C25
Appendix to Chapter 8 Victims of Serious Crashes

Windows of Change Transitions Predictions and Eventualities

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