ADHD and Older Adult Car Accidents in Oceanside

Getting older comes with additional injury risks in Oceanside and throughout California. While nobody wants to think about age-related injury risks, it is important to consider safety issues for seniors. Adults aged 65 and older are at greater risk of a range of accidental injuries that are more likely to be serious, including fall hazards and motor vehicle crashes. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), there are about 48 million drivers over the age of 65 in the United States, which is a 68 percent increase from about 20 years ago. Although “driving helps older adults stay mobile and independent,” according to the CDC, “the risk of being injured or killed in a traffic crash increases as people age.”

A recent study addresses the relationship between aging drivers involved in motor vehicle crashes and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). While we do not often think about the injury risks linked to ADHD among older adults, this new study in JAMA Network Open suggests that there is a clear connection between ADHD in older adults and the likelihood of a motor vehicle crash. Our Oceanside car accident attorneys can say more.

Details of the Study on ADHD and Older Adult Traffic Collisions

The authors of the recent study assessed data from five major US cities, including San Diego, to “examine the prevalence of ADHD and the association between ADHD and crash risk among older adult drivers.” While there has been a significant amount of research on older adult driving safety more broadly and on the connection between ADHD and younger drivers, little research has been done on ADHD and older adult driving risks. 

The researchers studied nearly 3,000 drivers with a mean age of 71, and they determined that “older adult drivers with ADHD had significantly higher incidence rates of hard-braking events per 1000 miles than those without ADHD . . . as well as self-reported traffic ticket events per 1 million miles and self-reported vehicular crashes per 1 million miles.” Adjusting for other factors, the researchers found that older adults with ADHD have a 7 percent increased risk of “hard-braking events,” a 102 percent increased risk of traffic tickets, and a 74 percent increased risk of being involved in a car accident. In short, it appears that ADHD among older adults is a significant factor in motor vehicle crashes among drivers aged 65 and up. 

Keeping Older Adult Drivers Safe

What can older adults do to stay safe on the road? It is important to recognize the limitations of ADHD and to adjust accordingly, and to take the following precautions outlined by the CDC:

  • Wear a seatbelt;
  • Only drive if conditions are safe, meaning in daylight and in good weather;
  • Avoid driving if you are tired; and
  • Never consume alcohol and drive.

Contact an Oceanside Car Accident Lawyer

If you were injured in a motor vehicle accident, it is important to talk with an attorney about your case in order to determine your options for compensation. An experienced Oceanside auto injury attorney can assess your case to determine which party or parties may be liable, and we can assist you through your insurance claim and your lawsuit against the liable parties. Contact the Walton Law Firm today for more information about how we can help you to seek the compensation you need.

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