Mature Drivers: Some Statistics and Safety Regulations
Driving is an important fact of life in south Florida. Where walkability is not available, driving also allows individuals of all ages to maintain an independent and productive lifestyle. Mature drivers are one group of Florida residents that benefits from the independent lifestyle that driving affords.
According to AAA, however, senior drivers are at a higher risk of having a serious collision per mile driven than most all other driver age groups, with the exception of young drivers. Per mile driven, the AAA reports that drivers in their late 70s and early 20s have about the same number of crashes that involve injuries. The risk of injury also increases with age. Injury and death is reported for drivers age 85 and older at a higher rate than any other age group, according to the AAA.
Mature drivers must, of course, obey the rules of the road that apply to all Florida drivers. Otherwise, and although there are generally few additional requirements that apply specifically to mature drivers, there are certain aspects of Florida’s road safety laws of which older drivers should be aware.
License Requirements for Mature Drivers in Florida
In Florida, a standard Class E driver’s license must normally be renewed every eight years, according to information provided by the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV). This rule applies to drivers up to 80 years old. Older drivers (age 80 and above) must have their driver’s licenses renewed every six years. According to the FLHSMV, Florida allows licensed drivers a one-time online convenience driver’s license renewal, and there is a vision test requirement for drivers 80 years of age or older who cannot renew their licenses online.
Reporting A Driver for Medical Review
For all drivers, including mature drivers, where medical conditions may make their driving unsafe, any physician, person or agency may report this concern to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV). Importantly, there must be a medical condition or symptom that underlies the report. Under Florida law, the FLHSMV may require a driver to take a test or retest, if food cause is shown that the driver is incompetent or otherwise not qualified to be a licensed driver. The law also provides that where the FLHSMV can require the driver to submit medical reports to its medical advisory board for review and recommendation if it has reason to believe that the driver is not qualified to operate a motor vehicle.
Identification Cards for Former Drivers
Drivers who are no longer able or interested in driving for whatever reason are encouraged by the FLHSMV to give up the privilege of driving, and to surrender their drivers’ licenses. These former drivers can obtain state issued identification cards so that they will continue to have documentation for the purpose of providing proof of identity.
If you are a mature driver or any driver needing more information about licensing requirements, or if you are involved in an automobile accident and have questions about your rights or responsibilities, contact a Fort Pierce car accident attorney serving St. Lucie & Martin County at Sholtes Law, PLLC.