Most sources say that a person is considered a senior citizen when they reach the age of 65. At this point, they may be more conscious than ever of their health and ability to maintain independence.
Being able to own and operate a car is a good way to retain independence. And, according to a recent study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, driving may also help seniors stay healthy. This study shows that seniors who drive regularly experience less cognitive decline over a 10-year period.
With this in mind, it's important for senior drivers to be safe drivers. It's also good for older car owners to get their hearing and vision checked often and to be aware of any limitations they may have. Taking this into consideration, new vehicle safety technology may do a lot to help seniors be able to drive longer.
Specific Safety Features that may be Useful to Senior Drivers
A recent study from AAA looked at 16 vehicle safety features in order to find out which ones would help senior drivers the most. The researchers involved were mainly concerned with two things. First, they wanted to identify technologies that would make it easier for seniors to avoid crashes. And, second, they were looking for features that would make driving easier and more comfortable.
Based on findings from this study, here are the top three safety features for senior drivers.
Forward Collision Warning
No matter how healthy a person is, they can expect their reaction time to slow down as they age. This is why seniors are often involved in vehicle crashes. They may see the other car or object in the road, but they can't react quickly enough to avoid hitting it.
However, with Forward Collision Warning (FCW), a car is equipped with sensors that can detect how close the vehicle is to other cars, people or objects. Then, if something comes too close, the driver is warned. Or, if FCW is combined with an Automatic Braking feature, the car may stop on its own if an obstacle is detected.
Different versions of this technology are available, and some are much more advanced than others. But even a basic Park-Assist feature can make it easier for a senior driver to park a vehicle, even in a tight space. This is quite a perk for those who don't trust their depth perception quite as much as they used to.
If a car is equipped with a Park-Assist system, sensors and cameras help drivers determine how close they are to other vehicles. This feature will also make it easier for seniors to avoid hitting a curb or any type of object that may be in the way. If the system is advanced enough, it can take over and do the parking itself.
Research indicates that seniors who use Park-Assist have about 81 percent fewer curb strikes than those who don't use this technology. This safety feature can also help prevent injuries by reducing the amount of upper body twisting that seniors might have to do in order to park.
It's hard for a stressed-out driver to be a safe driver. And it's reasonable to expect seniors to get frustrated if they aren't sure where they're going. However, with an advanced navigation system, senior drivers can relax and focus on the road even in new places.
Old-fashioned GPS systems are okay, but newer systems can gather real-time traffic information and make instant adjustments to directions, if needed. With the aid of such a system, seniors can avoid congested areas, and confidently deal with road construction. In fact, drivers of every age should have some type of navigation tool.
Financing Assistance for All Ages
Having access to a safe and reliable car is important for drivers of all ages. And if you need to finance a vehicle, Drivers Lane can help. Even if you have bad credit, we can make the car buying process faster and easier. How?
We can match you with a local dealership that can work with unique credit situations. You may, in fact, even be able to purchase your vehicle with little or no money down. The service we provide is free of charge and comes with no obligations. So, go ahead and fill out our simple and secure auto loan request to get started today.