Senior drivers cause 16 percent more accidents than drivers aged 20-65, with much higher rates of serious injuries and death. Through the development of adaptive devices, manufacturers are addressing the leading causes of senior accidents.
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Blind lane changes are responsible for over 840,000 accidents each year, with more than 300 deaths, necessitating a Lake County auto accident lawyer. For senior drivers, blind lane changes occur because the driver is simply unable to see the other vehicles in their side view mirrors.
New wide angle side view mirrors more than double the size of the object in the mirror allowing seniors to see more potential road dangers. Panoramic rear view mirrors also provide a fuller picture of the vehicle’s blind spots on either side.
Longer Pedals And Extenders
As drivers age, they are unable to reach the pedals in their original positions from a comfortable position. To compensate, the driver places his or her seat as far forward as it will go, limiting their visibility and putting them at risk of serious injury from an airbag deployment.
Pedal extenders adjust the height of the gas and brake pedals by up to 7″, and can be adjusted for any driver who uses the vehicle. The longer pedals are also ideal for seniors with joint pain who may not be able to exert enough pressure on a traditional pedal to stop in an emergency situation.
Even with properly operating power steering systems, some senior drivers struggle to control their vehicles in tight conditions. The driver lacks the strength to turn the wheel fast enough to avoid a collision, especially in parking lots and at intersections.
Hydraulic and electric steering assistance systems add another layer of control over the steering wheel. Small devices are easy for seniors to grab, and the mechanisms inside the device amplify the power of the senior’s touch. The result is faster, smoother turns and a decrease in the number of accidents that require a Lake County auto accident lawyer.
Though Illinois has some of the strictest laws in the nation concerning senior access to vehicles, the frequency of accidents involving seniors continues to stay high, and the severity of their accidents continues to rise. Through education about the need for cars that seniors can control, and the introduction of adaptive technologies, seniors and Illinois drivers will need a Lake County auto accident lawyer much less often.