A new campaign is aiming to help keep older drivers safe on roads around Lichfield and Burntwood.

Staffordshire Safer Roads Partnership is behind the Safe and Sure initiative.

It offers tips on renewing a driving licence and getting behind the wheel with medical conditions, as well as access to a driver review.

Cllr Graham Hutton said that as a mature driver he was keen to support the campaign.

Cllr Graham Hutton

“Driving is the main means of transport for the vast majority of people, but is important that we recognise how our driving ability changes, particularly as we get older and experience slower reaction times.

“The mature driver reviews provide a great opportunity to have your driving checked by an expert and identify any areas that may need improving.

“I would definitely recommend this to all drivers over the age of 70.”

Cllr Graham Hutton, Staffordshire County Council

Helen Fisher, Deputy Commissioner for Staffordshire, said:

“As we get older, while we have a wealth of experience on the roads, our eyesight and hearing may not be as sharp as they were and it can be harder to judge speed and distance – this can make driving more difficult and less enjoyable.

“This is an important campaign that will make it much easier for mature drivers to get the information they need to help them stay safer on the roads.

“Giving mature drivers tips and advice and the chance to review their driving skills will hopefully make them more confident and comfortable while behind the wheel.

“This will also help give their families peace of mind that they are safe to drive.”

Helen Fisher, Deputy Staffordshire Commissioner

The Staffordshire Safer Roads Partnership are offering 50% off mature driver reviews with IAM RoadSmart for the first 20 people signing up. For more information on the course and on how to book, visit Advanced driving and riding courses | IAM RoadSmart. When purchasing the course use the code ‘STAFFS50’.

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8 Comments

  1. All drivers over the age of 70 should undergo a medical and driver assessment every 3 years until 76 then every year after, some of the older drivers I have witnessed on our roads is truly appalling. Before all the comments about younger drivers are posted, yes all age groups tend to have bad elements but this post is about the above article.

  2. So the ‘campaign’ is really an advertisement for a company who charges £65 to assess your driving.
    The first twenty applicants will be at half price. Allegedly.
    From the performance yesterday of a young quad bike driver overtaking waiting traffic at the St. John Street lights then turning across the lane in front of cars as the lights changed, it occurs to me the wrong age demographic is in need of education.
    As an older driver I am very aware that it is a privilege to still be able to drive. As most older drivers the annual mileage is often very small. For many reasons there are poor motorists out there but age is by no means the worst of them.

  3. All drivers need to take personal responsibility on the roads and respect the highway code. Particularly 20mph zones 24 hours a day, all day every day.

  4. Richard Nelson with luck you might make 70. Many “old” drivers are vastly experienced it is the younger and boy racers that need education

  5. The Department for Transport (DfT) says there is no evidence older drivers are more likely to cause an accident, and it has no plans to restrict licensing or mandate extra training on the basis of age.

    There were 10,974 accidents involving drivers over the age of 70 in 2011, says the DfT. That compares with 11,946 accidents involving 17-to-19-year-old drivers and 24,007 accidents involving 20-to-24-year-old drivers. Its statistics do not account for who caused the accident.

    “There’s a stat that young drivers under the age of 24 have twice as many crashes as you’d expect, given the numbers on the road, and older drivers have half as many as you’d expect, given the number on the road,” says Neil Greig, director of policy and research at the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM).

    Research by the RAC Foundation suggests drivers aged 75 and over make up 6% of all licence holders but account for just 4.3% of all deaths and serious injuries. By contrast, drivers aged 16-20 make up just 2.5% of all drivers but 13% of those killed and seriously injured.

    But although both charities believe older drivers are as safe as any other driver, there are some exceptions.

    https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-24204489

  6. I’ve seen more elderly drivers causing accidents or near misses than younger drivers and as someone said ‘boy racers’. I’ve had several near misses in Lichfield from elderly. None realised what they’ve nearly done. I’ve witnessed elderly in Lichfield hit parked cars, then drive off and not even realise what they’ve done. I had to report one the once – almost ripped the bumper off someone else’s car. Someone on comments said older drivers are more experienced, Yes that’s true, however elderly drivers have significantly reduced response times, reduced awareness and reduced vision in many cases among them a menace on the roads. I agree entirely they should retake their test and they should be judged the same as that of a new driver. If they can’t prove they should be on the road then they shouldn’t. As much as I don’t want to, I’ll accept by the time I get to that age and I don’t pass then I’ll have to give up driving. There is no excuse, no reason to be driving if you are not capable of doing so safely.

  7. There are stereotypes at either end of the age spectrum. There is the young lad, wearing a baseball cap the wrong way around, driving a souped up Fiesta with a loud exhaust too fast. Then there is the old guy, wearing a flat cap, driving an old Volvo, too slowly. Although there is a basis for most stereotypes, the real truth is not that simple. There are good and bad drivers at any age, and there doesn’t seem to be much statistical evidence that older drivers should be singled out for attention. With the impending changes to the Highway Code, all drivers need education to ensure their safety and that of more vulnerable road users.

  8. I agree with John Allen on stereotypes at either end of the age spectrum. However, as someone who is getting older myself, I accept things change and not always for the better. Eyesight issues, dislike of driving at night, over cautiousness translating into slow driving, can be problems. But I think any review of driving ability should be free. Another stereotype is that all older people are well off.

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