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Senior Drivers Steer Clear of Risk

November 25, 2001

Once again you have managed to make it appear that senior drivers are a threat to others on the road ("No Magoos in This Bunch: Older Drivers Keep Sharp," Nov. 20). You show a graphic, "Age and Crash Risk," that appears to indicate that the risk of crashes goes up with the age of the driver. Reading the fine print, it can be determined that these statistics have to do only with fatal crashes, and you actually explain in the text that this is because the older drivers themselves are more susceptible to injuries in crashes. You then try to explain away the statistic that older drivers have the lowest crash rate by pointing out they drive fewer miles.

I drive around 25,000 miles a year. Some of the ways I can spot other drivers around my age (75) are these: They rarely tailgate me; they don't cut in and out of lanes to gain a few car lengths; they usually don't drive 10 to 20 mph over the speed limit; they hardly ever change lanes without signaling (though we do sometimes forget to cancel our signal because it is hard for us to hear).

Road testing of senior drivers might reduce accident rates slightly; road testing of all drivers on a periodic basis would reduce them substantially.

Richard P. Young

Claremont

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