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AAA To Hold Elderly Driver Awareness Week

BALTIMORE (WJZ)–On average, more than one week in Maryland, an elderly driver is killed in a car accident. Talking to seniors about their driving can be a tough subject.

But as Adam May reports, this week AAA will do just that in hopes of saving lives.

A cell phone video caught a station wagon driving the wrong way on Interstate -95 near Philadelphia. Tim Fleming captured the footage just weeks ago— including the sounds of cars crashing to avoid a head-on collision. The elderly driver was going 45-50 miles an hour.

“It was crazy, man,” Fleming said. “I’m going 95 North. She’s going 95 North in the south-bound lane, in the fast lane.”

The incident caused four accidents, serving as a good example for AAA’s Elderly Driver Awareness Week.

“It’s becoming increasing important for young adults to engage their parents, not only about driver awareness, but the ability for senior drivers, as they age in this society, to continue to drive and be mobile and be safe—not only for themselves, but other motorists,” said AAA Mid-Atlantic spokesperson Regina Averella.

Elderly drivers account for 11 percent of fatal crashes in the United States and 7 percent of crashes involving injuries—like an accident a few days ago in Florida when a 74 year old hit the gas instead of the brakes, slamming into a hair salon.

AAA says there are warning signs.

“Some things to look, for example would be a series of near misses or accidents, or parents inability to read road signs, things of that nature,” Averella said.

The 84-year-old woman caught going the wrong way in Pennsylvania was arrested at her home in Delaware.

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  • civilunrestnow

    Until Maryland begins to require retesting after age 70 this will continue to happen. As a former law enforcement officer, I can tell you that senior driver pose more of a risk to themselves and others than every other group of drivers including teenagers. Politicians are afraid to require the retesting because they don’t want to lose votes. I once issued a manditory retest for a gentleman who could not turn his head from side to side. The court through out the retest citation and 3 weeks later he was T Boned on Liberty road and killed. He couldn’t turn his head to see the trash truck that hit him broad side.

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  • pigeon

    Speaking for myself as a senior citizen, I hope my children will do for me what we had to do for my father, disable the vehicle once they feel it is no longer safe for me to drive. If I’m not suffering from mental deficiency (which I am normally) or medically unable to properly operate a vehicle, they need to attempt to explain to me why. Hopefully, for their sakes, I understand.

  • Todd Loren Sinclair

    Listen …. that’s not my mom’s car .. she swears she was nowhere near Pennsylvania! She didn’t know where she was … but she”s sure it wasn’t Pennsylvania…

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