Guest article by Motoring lawyer, Alison Ashworth
There are often polarised views when it comes to elderly drivers. On the one hand, some call time on the older generation’s use of the road, pointing to slower reaction times and slower driving speeds.
On the other hand many welcome the more experienced driver on the road; after all, there can be no substitute for many years spent acquiring and developing driving skills and experience on the road.
However, it’s no secret that as we age, we become more susceptible to conditions which could affect our ability to drive.
Ensure drivers are fit to drive
A new website, www.olderdrivers.org.uk, has been launched by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA), aimed at keeping elderly drivers safe on the road. A key message which runs throughout the site is a reminder that legally, it is our own responsibility to ensure that we are fit to drive.
The website has many unique features which enable elderly drivers to assess whether their driving continues to meet the legal standards, whether they require additional training or adjustments, or whether it’s time to hang up the car keys for good.
Kevin Clinton, Head of Road Safety at ROSPA said:
“The aim of the website is to help older people to continue to drive for as long as they are safe to do so, and to provide advice on making the decision to retire from driving if they are no longer able to drive safely.”
The law on elderly drivers:
- All driving licences must be renewed once the motorist reaches 70 years old.
- Once renewed at age 70, the licence must be renewed every 3 years thereafter.
- Elderly drivers (and indeed all drivers) must report notifable medical conditions to the DVLA who will then ultimately decide whether the person can continue to drive. A list of all notifiable conditions can be found here.
- Failure to report a notifiable condition could result in the driver being prosecuted, a fine of up to £1000 and would likely invalidate any policy of insurance.
- All motorists must be able to read a number plate from 20 meters away. Police can require a driver to take an on-the-spot eye test if they are concerned about a person’s vision. If a driver fails an on-the-spot eyesight test, the police can make an immediate request for to the DVLA to revoke the licence.
Article written by Specialist Motoring Law Solicitor Alison Ashworth; Director of Ashworth Motoring Law Ltd. If you would like more information or to contact Ashworth Motoring Law Ltd regarding any motoring offence, call 0330 33 22 770, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the website.