Elderly Drivers and Car Accident Risks in Missouri
Springfield attorneys from Buchanan, Williams & O’Brien present the following guide: Elderly Drivers and Car Accident Risks in Missouri. Call for more information.
We are personal injury experts who have achieved results for our clients in Springfield for over 40 years.
What Are the Elderly Driving Laws in Missouri?
Older adults who spend less time behind the wheel are more likely to be involved in a fatal motor vehicle crash than younger drivers. Cognitive abilities get duller as individuals get older, and this inability extends to operating motor vehicles. They may suffer from mild forgetfulness, sensory changes, diminished vision, and slower reflexes.
The Missouri Department of Revenue (DOR) requires all drivers aged 70 and above to renew their licenses every three years. If a person is between the age group of 21 to 69, they must renew their licenses every six years. Certain special license renewal rules apply to drivers older than 70, including taking the vision and road sign recognition tests.
For non-US citizens, their license expiration maybe sooner in accordance with the date on the document they submitted as proof of their identity and eligibility for their license.
Although the DOR stipulates rules and regulations to be followed by all drivers in Missouri, the state may impose special restrictions and requirements for older drivers to ensure road safety. These include driving at reduced speed, daytime driving, installing additional rearview mirrors, etc. In addition, the DOR may conduct written and road tests if they observe signs of possible impairment in the older driver.
Elderly Drivers and Car Accident Risks in Missouri
Some individuals remain safe drivers until they are 80 years old. However, aging influences the driving abilities of most older drivers, even though some may be reluctant to give up their car keys.
While older adults are more likely to use a seat belt and obey driving laws on the road, they experience distinct age-related physical and cognitive impairments that may affect their driving skills. As a result, all drivers must exercise reasonable care on the road.
Elderly drivers can be sued for negligence when they put other road users at risk by:
Driving through a red light
Driving below the speed limit
Driving the wrong way on roads and highways
Failing to yield the right of way
Failing to monitor their surroundings
Following too closely
Forgetting to use car signals
Ignoring traffic signals or signs
Misjudging another driver’s speed
Taking improper turns
What to Do After Getting Into a Car Crash With an Older Driver in Missouri?
Car accidents cause intense mental or physical pain and suffering, and those involving elderly adults may be comparably difficult to navigate. If you are involved in a car crash, you need to do the following:
- Call the police to report the car accident
- Perform a wellness check
- Seek immediate medical attention
- Contact an attorney
Unsafe Driver Investigation
The Department of Revenue (DOR) will accept requests from driver examiners, family members, law enforcement officers, therapists, or registered nurses requiring them to conduct unsafe driver investigations. The person making a claim must complete a Driver Condition Report (Form 4319) and submit it to the Driver License Bureau.
Possible Damages After a Missouri Car Crash With an Elderly Driver
Missouri practices an at-fault insurance system for car accidents, and the driver of the vehicle at fault is responsible for paying the resulting damages. However, for-profit insurance companies will do anything to deny your claim or reduce its value.
In such cases, a personal injury lawsuit may be the only recourse for a victim to receive financial compensation. The law of pure comparative negligence is also applied to allow for damages to be awarded in proportion to the defendant’s degree of fault.
Generally, after an automobile accident, you can recover the following types of compensation under Missouri car accident laws including:
Lost wages (past and future)
Medical bills (past and future)
Physical or emotional pain or suffering
Out-of-pocket accident costs
Timely actions are crucial when recovering compensation in a personal injury case. It would help if you did not have to spend years negotiating with an insurance company more interested in its profits than your physical well-being.
Missouri personal injury attorneys will discuss your case and determine your eligibility for compensation.
Elderly Drivers Statistics
Elderly drivers aged 65 and above account for nearly 21% of the licensed drivers in Missouri. (Missouri Department of Transportation)
233,235 senior drivers (65 or older) were injured in car accidents in the U.S. in 2020. (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration)
6,549 senior drivers were fatally injured in an accident in 2020. (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration)
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 67% of motor accident deaths in 2020 involved either older drivers or their passengers.
Almost 200,000 injured seniors were treated in the emergency room in 2020. (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC)
Fatal crashes increase at age 70 and peak at 85 or older. (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety)
Elderly males have substantially higher crash death rates than females, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
Contact Buchanan, Williams & O’Brien, P.C. Today!
Even the most stringent precautions cannot prevent motor vehicle accidents from occurring. An experienced personal injury attorney at Buchanan, Williams & O’Brien can help you investigate the cause of the accident, preserve evidence, and make a compelling case for compensation.
Suppose you were injured in an accident with an older driver suffering from a medical condition or other health-related problem that inhibited their ability to operate a vehicle safely. In that case, you may wonder, “how often do car accident cases go to court?” and may want to hold the motorist responsible for your damages.
Our attorneys can represent your case if you do decide to take your car accident case to court. Contact us to schedule a free initial consultation today.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why Are Older Drivers at Risk of Accidents?
Elderly adults may become unsafe drivers for various reasons, including:
- A failed capacity to reason or remember
- Becoming too weak to drive
- Decreased reflexes or motor abilities
- Having difficulty concentrating
- Having a more challenging time gauging distance
- Medical conditions that adversely impact their ability to drive safely
- Poor eyesight or impaired hearing
- Injuries or mobility issues
- Relying on medications that can cause drowsiness
- Showing signs of cognitive decline or dementia
Who May Be Responsible for a Car Accident Involving an Elderly Driver?
- The other driver
- The vehicle driver
- The car manufacturing company
- The driver’s employer