We asked our regular contributors through e-mail, How would you feel about a law that requires people over the age of 70 to pass a specialized driving test in order to continue driving? We got many interesting responses. Here are some of them. We have just copied and pasted their responses, not editing them in any way and most of the respondents have requested to stay anonymous, so no names will be published.
1-5 Opinions on specialized driving test
1. That’s a great idea. I’m going to call my 68-year-old congressman and ask him to support such legislation.
2. Here in Illinois, my grandpa had to do it every year after 75.
3. Ugh, lease. My grandma is practically blind and went to take her driving vision test to renew her license. She failed, but the lady at the DMV felt bad so she had her take it again and gave her hints so she could pass it. So now my practically blind grandma is out on the roads still.
It’s for their safety as much as anyone else’s. I’m so mad that the lady at the DMV was so irresponsible as to let her keep driving.
4. An old retired guy here….
74 years old to be precise.
I would accept such a test provided it was only to catch really age-related diseases. (Dementia, poor reflexes, etc.)
I live in a retirement community and most of the people who should not have a license have already given them up.
The first day I was here I heard a conversation between two guys.
Guy One: I just turned 88 and turned in my driver’s license.
Guy Two: Why would you do that?
Guy One: I don’t want to spend the rest of my life in jail.
5. I’m all for retesting people, however, I’m not sure what you mean by specialized. The requirements for good driving don’t change with age so it should be the same test.
6-10 Opinions on specialized driving test
6. Can we make everyone take it?
Seriously, I see more horrible drivers in the Commuting age bracket than in the Retired age bracket.
7. Ideally, we’d all be retested every 10 years or so until we hit 60, then we’re retested every 5 years.
However, older folks are a huge voting bloc it’s unlikely this would ever pass.
8. I’d be ok with it if over-70 drivers are statistically more likely to get into accidents.
9. Let me say this about that:
The neighbor I love is 93 and still driving when she’s up to it. She can barely see the on/off switch on her vacuum cleaner.
Should she be driving?
I want her to maintain independence; but at the same time, I don’t think it’s safe for her or others. Yet the DMV doesn’t require her to take a vision exam or a competency test.
10. Everyone should take a standardized road test every 5 years.