Make Drive Test re-testing mandatory every 7 years for all class of licenses
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The development and ever changing mental, physical health conditions of our population as well as the mere fact our baby boomers are becoming 1 of the largest groups in population, and habits that form, imagine that a simple re-test of all classes of licensing could in fact make our roads a little safer?
Traffic accidents, being an important source of morbidity and mortality, represent a real public health challenge. Many approaches have been tried to identify potentially dangerous drivers,and the concept of “accident proneness” introduced by Greenwood and Woods, has been applied to road traffic since the postwar period.
From that point of view, mentally ill people have been viewed as dangerous drivers, sometimes without serious epidemiological basis. When studies were performed, results showed that the question of allowing the mentally disturbed to drive was indeed quite complex. Psychiatric patients as a whole do not present a greater risk than the general population, except in cases of an alcohol or drug comorbidity. Nevertheless, patients with personality or psychoneurotic disorders have high accident rates, while psychiatric subjects, who drive far less than matched non-psychiatric controls, have more accidents per miles driven, with specific characteristics.A pilot study by Elkema reveals the benefits of treatment in all categories of disorders, with the exception of personality disorders.
Medical doctors have a responsibility in the prevention of accidents and violations due to their patients' mental disorders. Yet the effectiveness of this prevention is difficult to measure since once a patient stops driving, it can longer be known if he or she was ever really a driver prone to traffic accidents.Source: (http://jme.bmj.com/content/27/1/36 )
FACT: That a majority of mood disorders including anxiety & bipolar disorders develop in early to mid 20's ( 3-7 years after passing their G2 exit test )
OUR BABY BOOMERS
Seniors are safe drivers compared to other age groups, since they often reduce risk of injury by wearing safety belts, observing speed limits, and not drinking and driving. However, they are more likely to be injured or killed in traffic crashes due to age-related vulnerabilities, such as more fragile bones. Medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes and other illnesses also make it more difficult for older drivers to recover from any injuries. With the exception of teen drivers, seniors have the highest crash death rate per mile driven, even though they drive fewer miles than younger people.
Although Canadians are healthier and living longer than ever before, seniors are outliving their ability to drive safely by an average of 7 to 10 years. Most older drivers recognize and avoid situations where their limitations put them at risk. They drive less after dark, during rush hour or in bad weather, and avoid difficult roads such as highways and intersections.
Here are more key facts about senior drivers:
Fifty percent of the middle-aged population and 80 percent of people in their 70s suffer from arthritis, crippling inflammation of the joints, which makes turning, flexing and twisting painful.
Weaker muscles, reduced flexibility and limited range of motion restrict senior drivers’ ability to grip and turn the steering wheel, press the accelerator or brake, or reach to open doors and windows.
More than 75 percent of drivers age 65 or older report using one or more medications, but less than one-third acknowledged awareness of the potential impact of the medications on driving performance.
Per mile traveled, fatal crash rates increase beginning at age 75 and rise sharply after age 80. This is mainly due to increased risk of injury and medical complications, rather than an increased tendency to get into crashes.3
Since older drivers are more fragile, their fatality rates are 17 times higher than those of 25- to 64-year-olds.
In 2009, 33 million licensed drivers were over age 65 – a 20 percent increase from 1999. And by the year 2030, 70 million Americans in the U.S. will be over age 65 – and 85 to 90 percent of them will be licensed to drive.
In 2014, nearly 5,709 senior drivers were killed and 221,000 were injured in traffic crashes.
In 2009, more than 58 percent of deaths in crashes involving drivers over age 65 were older drivers themselves and 12 percent were their passengers. Twenty-eight percent of these deaths were occupants of other vehicles, bicyclists and pedestrians. By comparison, in the same year 40 percent of deaths in crashes involving at least one driver younger than age 21 were attributed to the younger drivers themselves and 23 percent were their passengers. Thirty-six percent were occupants of other vehicles, bicyclists and pedestrians.Source: ( http://seniordriving.aaa.com/resources-family-friends/conversations-about-driving/facts-research/ )
Given the statistics on having a driver's licence, it is not surprising that for all age groups and for both sexes, a minority of people used a primary means of transportation other than a car (public transit, walking, accessible transit or taxi). Among men aged 65 to 74, 84% got around mainly by driving their car, and only 9% by being a passenger in a car (Table 3). That left only 4% using public transit, 3% walking or bicycling, and the rest using accessible transit or taxis.
FACT: Car accidents are on the rise in Canada – and in Toronto, too. According to the Allstate Canada Safe Driving Study released Thursday, there were 7.3 per cent more reported collisions in Canada in 2014-15 than in 2013. And in Toronto there were 2 per cent more accident claims. Source: (http://toronto.citynews.ca/2015/11/26/car-accidents-on-the-rise-in-canada-toronto-study/
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