An 88-year-old bicyclist was hit and killed in a Sarasota County intersection in late January. At 2:45pm, the cyclist crossed U.S. 41 to Old Venice Road when a 95-year-old woman driving along U.S. 41 hit the cyclist on his right. The bicyclist was thrown from his bike into the roadway and later died, despite wearing a helmet. Authorities are investigating the accident, and it is not yet clear who is responsible.
As we all know, age can make a significant difference in reaction time, vision, hearing and driving ability. If you’re injured by an elderly driver, filing a claim may seem uncomfortable—but it’s often the key to recovering compensation for your injuries, lost wages and more.
Accidents and elderly drivers
When an elderly driver causes an accident, their age may be a contributing factor. Car accidents are typically litigated under a theory of negligence: the defendant has a duty to follow traffic laws and avoid causing harm to others, they breached that duty and as a result, the plaintiff suffered actual harm.
Florida places additional restrictions on older drivers. Drivers 80 and over must renew their license every six years, rather than the standard eight. They are required to pass a “mature driver vision test” to renew their license. Elderly drivers may also be subject to additional requirements, such as only driving automatic transitions, wearing hearing aids while driving or adding hand controls or pedal extensions to their vehicles. If a driver has failed to comply with these requirements, or is driving without a valid license, this information can help prove a negligence claim.
When you’re involved in an accident with an elderly driver, call a personal injury attorney right away. The skilled Sarasota, FL accident attorneys at Goldman, Babboni, Fernandez, Murphy & Walsh can review your claim and explain your legal options.