In this podcast, Rebecca Naumann, MPH, an epidemiologist from CDC's Injury Center, talks about steps older adults can take to stay safer on the road. Created: 3/15/2010 by National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Division of Unintentional Injury Prevention.
Date Released: 3/15/2010. Series Name: Healthy Aging.
[Announcer] This podcast is presented by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. CDC – safer, healthier people.
Driving helps older adults stay mobile and independent, but the risk of being injured or killed in a crash goes up with age. About 500 adults ages 65 and older are injured in crashes every day in the United States. Thankfully, older drivers can take steps to make their time on the roads safer.
If you're 65 or older and spend time behind the wheel, ask your doctor or pharmacist to review your medicines, both prescription and over-the-counter. A medication review can help identify side effects, like drowsiness, and drug interactions that could interfere with your ability to drive safely. Also, have your eyes checked by an eye doctor at least once a year and always wear your glasses or contact lenses when you need them. Being able to see your surroundings clearly is critical to safe driving.
Plan your route before you drive and leave a large distance between your car and the car in front of you. By leaving a good following distance, you can reduce your chances of hitting the car in front of you if it stops or slows down suddenly.
When you're on the road, take steps to avoid distractions in your car. Listening to a loud radio, talking on your cell phone, texting, and eating in the car can all take your attention away from driving which could have dangerous results.
Finally, think about ways that you may be able to get around without driving. Is it possible to ride with a friend? Is public transit an option to get you where you're going?
When you're behind the wheel, keep your safety in mind and take steps to reduce your risk. For more information about staying safe on the road, visit www.cdc.gov/injury.
[Announcer] For the most accurate health information, visit www.cdc.gov or call 1-800-CDC-INFO, 24-7.