As people get older, their ability to detect and react to certain stimuli diminishes over time. This includes the critical sense of vision, which is vital to people who wish to drive on the open road. When people suffer from a reduced ability to see, they run the risk of causing a catastrophic car accident, as well as injuring or even killing an innocent person. It is crucial that people understand the importance of good eyesight before the get behind the wheel of vehicle.
Even though a driver may pass the standard eye test that is given when he or she obtains a driver’s license, his or her eyesight may still cause problems when it comes to making quick decisions. For example, the National Safety Council reported that a 50-year-old may have difficulty seeing in low light conditions when compared to a 20-year-old. Since a driver’s license requires renewal every five years in Tennessee, a person could begin to experience eyesight difficulties in the years after obtaining a license.
Not only is it natural for people to experience a general decline in their vision as they age, but there are a number of age-related eye disorders that people can acquire as well. According to American Optometric Association, these conditions include the following:
- Diabetic retinopathy
- Macular degeneration
- Chronic dry eye
- Retinal detachment
In addition to these eye issues, older drivers may have trouble focusing on and reading street signs, seeing in low-light conditions, adapting to glaring headlights and perceiving changes in colors. When pulling out into traffic, elderly people may have difficulties judging the distance and speed of oncoming vehicles. This could put them in danger of becoming involved in a serious car accident.