On Sunday, February 2, 2014, there was a tragic accident in a Bradenton retirement community that left three people dead. A woman in an SUV accidentally backed into a crowd of people in a church parking lot, killing three of the pedestrians and seriously injuring several others. Florida has a very high rate of pedestrian and bicycle accidents, but Florida also has a high rate of auto accidents among elderly citizens. As drivers start to age, their eyesight and hearing begin to diminish. It is very difficult for senior citizens to give up their freedom and driving is integral to that freedom. Sarasota and Bradenton motor vehicle accidents caused by elderly drivers are usually due to inattention, not aggressive driving. Following are some statistics regarding older drivers:
According to the Department of Motor Vehicles, drivers over the age of 80 are more than twice as likely to be at-fault in a fatal motor vehicle accident than younger drivers.
Senior drivers have the second highest rate of fatal motor vehicle accidents after teenagers.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), in 2004 about 3,500 senior citizens 65 or older were involved in fatal traffic accidents.
Injuries to the Elderly from Motor Vehicle Accidents:
Older drivers may have pre-existing illnesses and are more vulnerable to injuries than younger drivers. It takes longer for an elderly person to heal and they can suffer from:
Hip and bone fractures
Increased likelihood of fatality
Incapacitating traumatic brain injuries
Elderly at Risk for a Sarasota or Bradenton Pedestrian Accident:
A study by Transportation for America ranked cities in South Florida as some of the nation's worst cities for elderly pedestrians. Often, elderly pedestrians don't have enough time to cross a street before the traffic light changes and they are caught in moving traffic. Following are tips for elderly pedestrians:
Try to use sidewalks where they are available
If there is no sidewalk, it's ok to walk facing traffic
Wear light or bright clothes so drivers can see you
Carry a flashlight at night
Make eye contact with drivers when crossing the street
Behaviors to Look for in Elderly Drivers:
Elderly drivers who are losing their vision and hearing ability can be a threat to themselves as well as other drivers. Following are some signs to look for that may signal problems for the elderly driver:
Driving slower than usual
Poor reaction time
Fear of driving on the highway
Sarasota and Bradenton Personal Injury Attorneys:
If you or a loved one has sustained injuries due to the negligence of another driver, please contact the personal injury attorneys at MORGAN ■ DRAMIS, P.A., at (941) 953-4555. We work on a contingency fee basis, so there is no cost to you unless we recover on your behalf. We will work to obtain the best possible compensation to cover your medical expenses, lost wages, cost of future medical treatment, future loss of income and pain and suffering. Please call us to schedule a free consultation.