Older driver test shock: Doing this is safer than taking extra driving tests, says RAC

Technological features such as collision warning, lane switching alerts and sleep detection cameras would be beneficial to improve road safety for elderly motorists. The tech upgrades are even thought to be a better method of improving road safety than retesting motorists when they reach 70 years old.


  • Volvo cars will detect drink-drivers with new technology

Some car features would be able to read an individuals strengths and weaknesses which will enable motorists to make decisions on their road action.

This could mean motorists better regulate their driving habits and stay away from the road during periods they are most likely to become distracted such as at rush hour or at night.

Researchers looking into the potential tech upgrades says the new upgrades should be easy to use for elderly drivers and not create extra stress.

UK road users must say whether they are fit to drive every three years when they reach 70 but do not need to take an extra test to retain their licence.

There have been calls for a change in the law but retesting drivers would likely be expensive and may not improve safety in the long-term.

Steve Gooding, Director at the RAC Foundation said: “It is so hard to devise a meaningful retest to be taken at what will always be an arbitrary age.

He added: “This report has two key messages. One is that technology has a large role to play in keeping people safe and the other is that any information we can get which encourages and helps us make an informed decision about our ability to drive safely is to be welcomed.

Mr Gooding said the RAC would also be supporting a regular eyesight test for elderly drivers to make sure as many road users are not caught out due to bad vision.

F1 racing technology is now being used in your car  [ANALYSIS]

MOT test changes are brought into effect with new technology  [ADVICE]
Your car could be stolen in 10 seconds – is your car under threat? [VIDEO]

Modern car technology can help motorists of all ages through a variety of different means.

Satellite navigation technology is so advanced road users can be informed of traffic updates as soon as an incident happens while your route is automatically changed.

External cameras can record road incidents to ensure motorists avoid being caught out by crash for cash car insurance scams.

Onboard sensors can also detect distracted motorists which can warn them to change their behaviour to avoid suffering a collision.


  • New Jaguar technology will recreate the feeling of walking

Windscreen connected camera technology Theo is just one example of how technology can be used to specifically help older drivers while they are behind the wheel.

The device records the road ahead from the windscreen and promises to use AI technology to keep older motorists safe on the road network.

The device will speak to the driver to see if they are conscious in an emergency or alert them if the tool notices the driver is getting distracted too easily.

The technology will even be able to alert emergency services if they feel its necessary so road users can receive help as soon as possible.

The device will sense road dangers and inform this to those behind the wheel to reduce the risk of suffering a car crash.

Mike Brockman, creator of Theo said: “Giving up driving is a life-changing decision for older people. The impact of restricted independence and mobility has proven to have a detrimental effect on mental health and greatly increases the chances of needing long term care.

He added: “Theo can help older drivers feel more confident on the road with the peace of mind that if they do have an accident, help is on its way immediately.  

“We hope this will help many older people maintain their independence and their good health for longer.”

However, research last year from the American Automobile Association (AAA) and the University of Utah revealed elderly motorists were at a higher risk of becoming distracted with all the extra technology on board.

Road users above the age of 55 took around eight seconds longer to use an in-car touchscreen compared to young drivers. 

Source: Read Full Article