Slim and Franke

Slim and Franke
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Monday, January 06, 2014


Question Of The Week 01-06-14

(I was inspired to make this my question of the week after reading G.B. Miller's post on his new blog Father Nature's Corner How Old Is Too Old.  If you answer my question of the week be sure and add your own age or at least your age range. 30-50, 51-70, 71-90?)


  1. Yes I do believe the age should not exceed 80 years subject to physical/mental well being and continued good reflexes. After this you should be entitled to a chauffeur provided by the state.

  2. My Dad is in his early 80's and to be totally honest, I don't think he should be driving.

  3. Ram
    If there is to be a cut off age, it definitely should be accompanied by some exam to determine that instability is present. Now the chauffeur provided by the state is a great idea! What is your age range? 30-50, 51-70, 71-90?

    LL Cool Joe
    If children have doubts about their parents driving ability perhaps they should ask the parent's physician to make a determination. What is your age range? 30-50, 51-70, 71-90?

  4. I feel it should expire at 80. But from 60 to 80, there should be a test taken every 4 years to make sure of the persons physical/mental fitness.


  5. I fall in the age group 51-70. Yes there should be a test say every 2-5 years or so starting from age 60 onwards to determine the ability & stability of the person.

  6. I think that subject to periodic testing there should maybe be some limits placed on driving as we age, such as only day time driving.
    Interesting timing since I have to go get my license renewed this week. At 66 my renewal will be good for 10 years.

  7. That is a tough question. I have known some people that are in their 80's that are safer drivers than those in their 20's but the majority of older people are not as safe of a driver mainly because of their reaction time. Perhaps the increase of testing is the best answer.

  8. Ooooh, good question. I think mandatory testing of some kind is in order, probably at 70, by 75 for sure. I think vision & reaction time are major concerns with older drivers. I will be 60 this month and just received my notice to renew my license. It will be good until I am 70. Weird to think it could be my last one.

  9. Yes, some tests should be required to continue driving after the age of 70. The ability to react and to see and the dark begin to decline as we age. Also the likelihood of dementia increases. 56

  10. No. But there should be strict re-testing. I know lots of 20 year olds who should NOT be driving...and plenty of 80 year olds who drive very well. To me, it's about the skill itself - not an arbitrary age.

  11. Oh, boy. Florida roads would certainly have a lot less traffic if there was an age limit. I kind of hate the idea of mandatory tests and age limits, but i have to say I actually know people who are legally blind and still drive and I always park at the farthest corner of parking lots and walk as much as I can. It used to be for the exercise but now it is just safer to stay away from traffic as much as possible.
    Now where I live in Vermont, there is no public transportation. Not being able to drive has a real impact on quality of life, not to mention the emotional impact of the loss of independence that can be such a blow to self-esteem.
    I think we need to take care of each other. I hope my children will tell me when it is time to hand over the keys. Well, what I really hope is that I will have the wherewith-all to make those kinds of decisions.

  12. I think mandatory testing should start at 70 and testing done every 2 years at the expense of the government. If the person fails that test they can re-test as often as they want at their own expense.

    I am in the 40 - 50 range.

  13. We had to go to a judge and have him take away my MIL's license. She had become senile but drove everywhere. She was amenable to this dramatic change, but we were moving her in with us and she would not be stranded as we also hired a daytime nurse. I think there should be a cut off age...with a test and the chance of an exception. Then tested every year, eye test every year, etc. Maybe 80? I think we need data to choose an age. I am in my mid-60s.

  14. Here after eighty (I think) you are retested each year. And going by some of the driving I see, it should be earlier. In some cases much earlier.
    And disability means that I don't drive. Neither I nor others would be safe.

  15. No, but I think we should give it up when we become a danger.

  16. Anonymous1:09 PM

    yes, at age 100.

  17. ashok
    For some reason I believe there are more accidents by drivers the age of 16 than drivers age 80.

    It is important for a person's driving history to be taken into account. If they have done well, regardless of age, that should be the primary determining factor.

    You are calling for discrimination against yourself my friend:)

    Changes in the wind
    Like I said to ashok, I think the majority of older drivers are actually better drivers than the younger of drivers. Maybe an insurance person can jump in here and tell us the answer to that.

    Aunt Betsy
    Yikes! You think you won't be driving when you are 70? I plan to be driving well past 70. My mother was 85 when she decided it was time to quit driving. My dad was about the same age when we suggested he should quit driving and he followed our suggestion. They had a friend who was 104 who ran every day and also stood on his head. He drove and probably was in better health than any of us.

    Lisa (aka Mollie's mom)
    Oh dear, I am really outnumbered on this driving business.

    Hooray. Now I can certainly agree here. Yes, it is about the skill itself and not an arbitrary age. I got upset the other night on the news when the anchor was astounded that a 61 year old man had robbed a bank. “61 years old!” he repeated over and over. Well, why not, I say. They should not be able to tell the age of the robber. That is discrimination:)

    I too would like to think I am going to have the wherewith-all to make those kind of decisions but you can probably see that they are going to have to throw out spike strips to slow me down.

    Okay I guess that isn't a bad idea.

    I cannot begin to imagine what my life would be like right now if I was not able to drive. It is my independence. It is my ability to say on my farm. It is frightening to think that someday someone might tell me I have to give up that independence. I am 67 and fear that I will be like my fraternal grandpa who was ordered by the court to give up his driver's license, had his car impounded and sold at auction and he went out and bought another car. Of course he was a potential WMD

    Elephant's Child
    Most people know their own limits. Sometimes we forget that everyone who is elderly is not insane.

    Chatty Crone
    That is right.

    You go girl!

  18. I really think it is a personal thing. I know 40 year olds who shouldn't be driving and 80 years olds I am quite comfortable with. I also know an 80 year old that scares the crap out of me.
    I do think after 70, testing should be mandatory beyond just the eye test we now get. I will be 75 this year and just drove the thousand miles one way to Florida by my self. I just hope I will know when it is time to hang up my keys.

  19. I think it's an individual thing. Some are more capable than others.

    I'm just barely in the 51-70 range.

  20. G.A., thanks for the shout out and glad I was able to inspire you with my blog post. Got a lot of feedback on FB with this as well.

    My cutoff age would be around 70, although I do know some 70+ year olds who drive okay (like my mother). However, it would be nice if we had mandatory testing here in CT, but we don't, so unless a family member or medical professional speaks up, a person can drive until they either wise up or drop dead.

    My age range is just a tad south of 50.

  21. I spent several days thinking about GB's post - I don't think there should be an age cutoff, but people need to be self-aware whatever the potential reason for being able to drive or not drive. And they need to listen when other people observe and kindly let them know. As hard as that may be, it's better than potentially being a hazard to someone. I'm 37 :)

  22. But Annie...accidents happen with youngsters not because of physical inability but 'cause of mental immaturity. I personally know excellent drivers in their 80's...and pathetic ones in their 20s. But we cannot frame rules based on exceptions. In general, human reflexes start to reduce after 60s.That's why I felt frequency of tests could be increased after 60 to ascertain the person's fitness.

  23. Arkansas Patti
    A friend of mine who also is 75 just drove to and from Tulsa, Oklahoma to Indianapolis, Indiana to house sit and dog sit for a young family who went on Christmas vacation for two weeks.

    I like you answer and think you must actually be acquainted with some capable older people.

    G.B. Miller
    You did raise an interesting question. I am three years from your cutoff age. Yikes! It terrifies me to think of giving up my drivers license. Since it isn't necessary to have a license to drive a tractor, guess I could still get to town. lol

    Riot Kitty
    Loved your answer. My children have observed and kindly let me know that I need to give up driving since they were in elementary school and I was in my 30's. Lol

    I totally understand your answer. Will be curious to know if you still feel that way when you are 60:) You are a healthy, sharp and alert young man and there is no reason you won't retain a lot of that well into your 80's.

  24. I think it depends upon how well you are doing. My late mom cut off her own driving several years ago. My dad probably shouldn't have been driving, but continued to up until about two months before his death.

  25. I always avoid age answers on this contraption, n so will not do FB!

    I too think it's individual- n pray folks can decide when they shouldn't anymore.

  26. Lynn
    My parents were like yours. Mom gave up on her own. Dad needed some encouragement and without would have driven to his dying day. I will be like my dad and his dad, holding on by my teeth.

    Snaggle Tooth
    1.) Huh?
    2.) I agree 100%

  27. My Blog Friends
    Doesn't anyone think a person's driving record should have anything to do with this? I have an excellent driving history. No accidents and no tickets. If all of a sudden that changes, it would be a pretty good clue that something needs to be checked on but otherwise leave me alone....right?

  28. This is a tough question Annie. In a perfect world we would have better public transportation (like Norway, where buses go absolutely everywhere)or a drivers-for-the elderly program. But we're a long way from that, and it is true that the fatality rate climbs dramatically over 65. See figs 3&4 at this site:
    I think increased testing is the fairest way to weed out dangerous drivers of any age.

  29. a question that can not be answered simply - no an age cut-off is not the mom at 88 drove better than most people i know. I stopped driving for several years at age 54 due to a debilitating condition that has now improved.
    Perhaps a better answer would be have driving tests required every 5 years after the age of 50, with the results used to determine if a person could or should still be on the road.

  30. I am not so sure, but as far as I am concerned, I am not keen about me driving after I am done with my sixties.

  31. Kerry
    Better public transportation would be nice but I doubt they will ever come out her in the rural areas and get me.

    Brite Mist
    I too have know many older drivers that are much better drivers than some younger ones. It is all in the ability to concentrate on the task at hand. Also it helps to have one of these new fancy automobiles that basically drives itself. My friend's car dings every time she goes over the center line. My brother can program his car where he is going and it tells him every turn to take plus it warns him if there is an obstacle in his path. Nice new profile picture by the way:)

    I will be 70 in three years and there is not way I can give up driving then without giving up my home, my dog, my chickens, my neighbors, my ....... oh dear.....yikes!

  32. I don't think there should be a cut off age but I think after a certain age you should be required to take the test again and if you pass then that's a clear indicator that you're still able to drive. If you don't pass then it gives you time to reflect....two people at age 80 are NOT the same.

  33. I wonder how it would work for people after a certain age to have to get a doctor's ok for driving. The doctor would know if there were any vision problems or slowing of reflexes.
    My far vision has improved with age, I went from being near sighted to being far sighted. I am in my early 70's and haven't noticed any slowing of my reflexes yet.

  34. Gosh... I don't know. My uncle is 94 and he's still out there driving. It does make me shudder.

  35. As you may already know I am in the early eighties and have just - after deliberating for almost a year - since my husband died, have decided not to drive anymore and have sold the car. Recently I hit a car door which was opening and which I didn't see. That could have been a person.
    I am very fortunate that I walk everywhere and if the weather is awful taxi. I would have to take many many taxis to make the amount the car cost me annually.
    I feel as if a great weight has been lifted from my shoulders.