Drivers in the US are able to continue driving longer than they did in the past, thanks to vehicle safety innovations. The health of older adults is also improving, which is another contributing factor. Tennessee doesn’t have any age-based restrictions on driving. The state does, however, reserve the right to revoke privileges if a person no longer has the mental or physical capacity to stay safe on the road.
Modern cars come standard with driver-assist technology that helps older drivers stay within their lane. These safety features could also alert them to incoming dangers to prevent car accidents.
Driver-assist technology to look for in a car includes:
- Forward collision warning
- Rear cross traffic warning
- Lane departure warning
- Automatic emergency braking
- Rear automatic braking
- Pedestrian automatic emergency braking
- Blind spot warning
- Blind spot intervention
Older adults could take refresher courses to remind themselves of important driving rules and techniques. It’s possible something may have changed since they went through driving school as well. Seniors may also want to sign up for a course that teaches them how to use driver-assist technology. It will allow them to properly use these features and improve their driving skills.
You could get a professional assessment to determine if it’s safe for you to continue driving. This helps take the guesswork out of knowing when you should stop driving. You could also find solutions, such as vehicle modifications, to help you continue driving.
Modifications that could help seniors:
- Pedal extensions
- Gas pedal block
- Steering wheel
- Upper body support
- Left foot throttle
- Convex mirrors
- Hand controls
- Modified secondary controls
A steering wheel modification could make the steering wheel easier to turn. Hand controls would allow you to accelerate and brake via a lever.
Many older drivers are able to drive well into old age with some modifications and refresher courses. Buying a new car that has key driver-assist technology also allows seniors to stay safe.