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Why do accident fatality rates increase after retirement age?

| Nov 8, 2021 | Car Accidents

When you look at car accident rates by age group, you will quickly see that young drivers have the highest rates. In fact, 16 and 17-year old drivers become involved in crashes almost twice as much as 18 and 19-year-old drivers. The statistics just keep declining after that, showing that experience is the biggest factor in helping people avoid accidents. The longer they’ve been driving, the less often they crash. 

What you will also find is that the crash rate bottoms out for those in their 60s. As expected, injury crashes and fatal crashes also hit their lowest levels for this age group. Those from 60 to 69 tend to be safe, experienced drivers. 

After that, though, fatality rates start increasing again. These drivers are even more experienced, so what’s happening?

The 2 main issues to consider

The first thing to consider is that cognitive and physical decline in those in the 70+ age group may make them crash slightly more often. Their rates do increase, though they’re never as high as the rates for teens. There is a slight increase in injury crashes, as well. Skills are diminishing, which outweighs that experience. 

When you look at fatal accidents, though, there’s a massive rise. For those in the 80+ group, fatalities almost equal teens’ crash rates. This is not due to a lack of skill as much as the frailty of the elderly. It simply makes them more likely to pass away from their injuries. 

What if you have lost a loved one?

Understanding why accidents happen is important, but if you have lost a loved one, it’s even more important for you to look into all of the legal options you have if someone else caused that fatal crash. 

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200 South Garfield Avenue
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