Letter: On the road with the over-65s

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The Independent Online
Sir: There is an assumption that older drivers cause too many accidents ("Doddery drivers put the rest of us at risk", 10 July). Yet statistics show that accident rates of drivers aged 74 and over are lower than those of drivers aged 21 to 24 and less than half those of drivers aged 17 to 21.

The car is a vital means by which older people can retain independence in accessing services and maintaining social contacts. Whilst it is indisputable that safe driving requires skills and alertness that deteriorate with age, such deterioration varies enormously from person to person.

Driving ability will not decline just because a person has become a pensioner. The vast majority of older people are responsible citizens, taking steps to avoid driving in conditions which could be dangerous and giving up driving altogether when it is no longer safe to continue.



Age Concern England

London SW16