Should she really be driving ? - volvoman
There was a bit of a shunt at the junction at the bottom of our road on Friday lunchtime. I heard the impact and went outside to see what had happened. An elderly woman in a new Nova had pulled into our road and a middle aged man in a Sierra then followed and parked just in front of her. They'd obviously been the 2 parties involved and I watched in amazement as he got out with small notebok and pencil and she then decided to to drive off, right past him! He jumped back in his car and followed at some speed. The road's a cul-de-sac so she had nowehere to go and it transpires that there was a bit of a scene in the turning circle as they argued about what had happened and eventually exchanged details.

All this begs a question: Did she see the guy and simply try to do a runner or was she so unaware of what was going on that she didn't even realise he was there, in which case should she be on the road at all ?

I don't want to sound ageist and realise that there are other, far more serious, problems on our roads but should the rules on driving beyond a certain age be changed and tightened up. There seem to be hoardes of old folks who can't see past their steering wheels in cars round here.
Should she really be driving ? - Gen
But I suspect banning all drivers under 25 would stop more accidents Volvoman
Should she really be driving ? - Rob the Bus
>>But I suspect banning all drivers under 25 would stop more >>accidents

I know what you mean, Gen, but I'm not terribly convinced. True, at 25 you are a damned sight more mature than you were at 17, but being able to predict and avoid crashes comes with experience. Would a newly qualified 25 year old with no experience of solo driving be any safer than a similar 17 year old?

BTW, I know it seems that I argue with every point you make, but I really haven't got anything against you!! ;-)
Should she really be driving ? - Gen
A little tongue in cheek comment, I admit. Obviously not realistic to do.

I actually think five year semi retesting for all drivers wouldn't be too onerous.

Or what about can't have a car more than 1100cc until you have had a driving license for more than 2 years?

Perhaps I'm weaving off the thread here...back to work in my other window (don't you love multitasking on computers...)
Should she really be driving ? - MarkyMarkD
One problem with restricting new drivers to smaller/less powerful cars, is that many new drivers can't afford their own car in any case and they have to drive round in Mum's/Dad's/their husband's/their wife's car.

It isn't fair to make Mum/Dad/hub/wife buy a small car instead of their existing decent car, just so they can share it with the new driver.
Should she really be driving ? - Altea Ego
Sorry must be the Sunday wine here, but what on earth does this event have to do with age? That scenario could just have been the same with any age group, in fact more likely between two teenagers in testosterone fueled novas.

Should she really be driving ? - roscopervis
I disagree with the ageist comment posted by Gen. I do agree that statistically, the 17-25 age group has a higer accident rate, but I think its a small minority of males that drive beyond their and their (usually) small cars capability. However I am under 25 and I have never had an accident. The first car I drove after passing my test was a Volvo 244GLT. It wasn't slow and RWD. I then drove a Rover 827 Si which had nearly 180bhp! Both were my dad's car.
I then got a Nova 1.2 to save money and that was far more dangerous to drive in my opinion. It is far more unforgiving in situations where extra grunt can be helpful, ie overtaking tractors and pulling out of junctions on gradients.

Both my brothers are under 25 too and both have had one crash, both not their fault. One occured when an old person stopped at a clear roundabout junction, then hesited then appeared to move away, only to stop suddenly again for car that wasn't even coming round to that exit and was a good way around the junction with plenty of time to move out. As she stopped, my brother, expecting her to go, went and slightly bumped the back of her. It lloks like it his fault as he went into back of her, but her poor judgement was to blame.

The other crash with my other brother occured when he was waiting at a T junction and another lady was indicating to go down this junction. My brother starts to creep out assuming that, as her indicator is on she will be turning down. However, she just keeps going making no attempt to turn, not even making an attempt to swerve around my brothers car that was juting out (by a bonnet of a 205 length) of the junction. She ploughed straight into him. Two witnesses couldn't believe her driving and she was cautioned by the Police.

It is apparent that all ages have some pretty shoddy driving standards, howver the worst drivers in terms of skill and general driving nous are old people. Young people generally have the skill, but not the sense, old people tend to have neither.

The driving test should be more stringent and drivers over 60 should be retested every two years. Those that are good drivers will pass and the blind old biddies will be weeded out of the system. You should only pay for the test if you fail.
Controversial perhaps, but I think it would work.
Should she really be driving ? - Gen

Proud to be ageist! Saw a shocking sight this morning, young lad (12?) refused cigarettes when I bought my sunday papers. And the ageist that I am I approved of the action...

If you think that big engined cars are safer (particularly for young drivers) why do you think insurance companies don't easily insure young drivers in big engined cars?

Unfortunately you shoot yourself in the foot, so to speak...

If you are finding a lack of power overtaking tractors you shouldn't be trying the overtake in the first place. I see super skilled young drivers pull these silly moves every day. An older driver has the experience to know that big gap won't be big when the car the other way is coming at 60mph.

And unfortunately both your brothers were clearly in the wrong.

Waiting at a roundabout junction and didn't notice the car in front hadn't gone for a gap! Rammed it! Suggest you advice your brother to watch the cars in front, terrible observation. 100% fault.

The other brother pulls out in front of a car out of a side road without waiting to confirm it has started to turn. Another terrible driving move.

In both cases a lack of observational skills and patience caused the accident.

Quote "It is apparent that all ages have some pretty shoddy driving standards, howver the worst drivers in terms of skill and general driving nous are old people. Young people generally have the skill, but not the sense, old people tend to have neither."

Er, yes, right, someone driving for 30 years has less skills...perhaps they just have more experience and see things you don't even realise you should have seen. Perhaps they get no rush seeing how small a gap they can "skillfully" get into.

Should she really be driving ? - Rob the Bus
Gen, are you sitting down? Brace yourself...

I fully agree with everything that you said above. There, that's shocked you hasn't it!!

There's not a lot that I can add to your excellent post so I shall amaze you again and shut up ;-)
Should she really be driving ? - roscopervis
I think that generalisation that all young drivers is bad judgement! I hope that this doesn't transfer to your driving skills.

I also don't know what a 12 year old buying cigarettes has to do with driving?!

I am not a risk taker when I am driving (200,000 miles + without an accident), but if YOU can honestly say that you have never put yourself in a situation that perhaps you shouldn't have been in when driving and some extra grunt would have been useful, then I am sorry you are obviously superior. I live where there are lots of agricultural road users. If you dont overtake then you dont get anywhere. If you are happy staying behind these vehicles forever and a day then I pity those drivers who are stuck behind you cursing.

And in the accident cases, I am sure that you would have done the same in both cases. In fact positive! The roundabout incident happened when the old ditherer in front had gone a significant distance over the junction line before inexplicably jamming on the brakes. Unfortunately, Mk 2 Fiesta brakes are poorer than a newish corolla so he skidded and bumped. In the second example, my brother was stationary as he quickly realised that she wasnt going to turn, he was only about 2 ft over the line. What was bad is that she was indicating then didn't even brake or take any avoidance action. That is some good reaction. The witnesses were aghast, and clearly concluded that she was to blame, heck even the Police blamed her! I am sure you have more authority than the Police to make sweeping statements so yes it was his fault!

Young Boy racer drivers and some girls (for no apparent reason) have abysmal judgement behind the wheel. Please don't tar us with the same brush. However may old people (which I belive this thread is about) have poor judgement and also have bad reactions and do driving nous. They might have been driving for 50 years but maybe they only drive 5 miles a week and only in the sunshine because they don't trust themselves! Good on them! I wonder how many accidents they have blurrily seen in their rear view mirror? This is who I am taking about not experienced lucid older drivers. My girlfriends dad is 62 and an ex rally driver. He is an excellent driver (he also says that I am too). In my plan he would sail through the test however many wouldnt and make the roads safer for all of us.

Should she really be driving ? - keithb
And in the accident cases, I am sure that you would
have done the same in both cases. In fact positive!

Can't speak for Gen but I know I wouldn't. Your brothers were clearly at fault for not anticipating what might happen. To rely on another car's indicators is sheer folly given the number of cars which travel for miles with indicators flashing. Experience teaches you to anticipate the worst and stay out of danger as far as possible.

The old adage of 'if you were moving, you're at fault ; if stationary, you may be at fault' contains a lot of truth.
Should she really be driving ? - Gen
You speak for me too keithb!

I do not generalise that all young drivers are bad drivers. I do generalise that they will tend to become better drivers with experience.

Indeed I have put myself in many dangerous positions and accept when I am in the wrong. On several occassions the actions of older and more experienced drivers have saved me from causing a crash.

However the extra grunt you speak of suggests one of two things. Firstly you are overtaking when you do not really have a safe distance to do so. Though the risk is small I ask you what you would do if your accelerator cable broke mid-overtake? You should always leave yourself an error/unexpected event gap as well. Secondly it is possible you are trying to overtake in the wrong gear- 2000rpm on a 1.3petrol will usually be a much slower response than 3000rpm. Truth is with a bigger engine many people are likely to accelerate into danger than accelerate out of it.

As to living where there is a lot of agricultural road users and if not overtaking will get nowhere- you will get somewhere and if you cannot wait for a safe place to overtake you didn't set off early enough. You need not pity the drivers behind me because if I am not going to overtake I will leave a gap between the agricultural vehicle and myself so they can easily overtake in two pieces if you see what I mean.

And are you really telling me that a mark 2 fiesta cannot stop in time when a corolla edges forward at a roundabout. If you were on a motorway at 80 and the corolla slammed it's brakes on i may be able to accept that but not here. Here's a crazy scenario. "Old ditherer" decides to wait for car on roundabout to finish after a reassessment of its speed and intentions. The boy racer in the fiesta behind sees a gap one corolla could just get in and thinks if i floor it i can sneak through too (causing the car on the roundabout to brake but who cares!)! Boy racer doesn't look back at the corolla in front and shunts it forward as he assumed the corolla was treating the public highway as a racetrack too. Nothing clever in going for small gaps.

And the second one he pulled out of a side road in front of a car as I said before. Terrible driving. No excuse. I have no authority compared to the police on scene but I suggest that if your brother had waited an extra minute to confirm the woman's intentions no crash would have occurred.

And many techinically good drivers crash a lot because they have the wrong attitude. Just need to watch the formula one to see that however good a driver you are if you push it to the limit at some time you will crash. Acceptable in formula one, not on our roads.
Should she really be driving ? - roscopervis
Gen, I appreciate what you are saying but in practice it falls down.

Secondly, The extra grunt I am speaking of is not related to overtaking when cars are coming the other way, its meant for staying out of danger for the least time philosophy, whether there are cars coming or not.

It is not possible at all that I (we) are trying to overtake in the wrong gear, I (we) do have a fairly comprehensive grasp of ratios and power/torque curves.

Thirdly, that is a crazy scenario as my brother is not a boy racer and the scenario is wrong, there is a huge gap, the car both were waiting for had turned off! and the corolla had gone quite way beyond the junction line when there was clearly nothing to stop for. The fiesta locked up and continued to skid (partially on the white arrows on the roundabout) until it bumped the corolla. The corrolla stopped quicky due to abs. So small gap=no boy racer= no.

And I am sorry, in the other situation all witnesses and the police were on the side of my brother, even the police that attended the scene couldn't believe it as she mad no attempt to brake and no attempt to avoid, even though she had time to do so as my brother (to his credit/reactions/experience) realised that she was going too fast to turn (she was speeding as well) in good time to stop his manouvere imagine this: manouvere.1.stop the manouvere.! plenty of time to move out to avoid on this wide road.
Perhaps if he had waited he wouldn't have crashed but how long until the next junction, and the next junction when she is blissfully unaware of her indicators and someone will do exactly the same as my brother.
Should she really be driving ? - THe Growler
Let's hear it for age-lib!

As somebody said youth and enthusiasm are no match for old age and treachery.

Bad drivers are bad drivers period. Everybody makes mistakes period. Poo-poo occurs. Generalisation sucks.

Youth+sharp reflexes (plus) let down by immaturity and inexperience (minus).

Age+ (maybe) slower reflexes (minus)compensated for by experience and less need to prove something (plus).

If re-testing is an issue it should be aimed both at young and old and classified so that young gets tested on personality type linked to likely road behavior and receives corrective training and a view of self aimed at deepening understanding of own behavior. Might even improve interpersonal skills.....

Old needs possibly similar but more emphasis on up to date knowledge of road rules and simulation tests of reflexes. Is mandatory re-testing used as much as it should be for traffic violators?

Sanctions like restricting less than good drivers with proven needs to limited distance from their home base, or daylight hours, or accompanied by other licensed driver or etc etc.

End result on both counts being an analysis of one's road attitude, not just skills, backed up with remedial training/coaching.

If, and if this further encroachment into nanny-ism should occur,
(and not hopefully in my lifetime) then it should be applied in targeted ways based on age and experience.

Now it's time for my afternoon nap and if I could just remember where I put my specs.....
Should she really be driving ? - Dynamic Dave
An elderly woman in a new Nova had pulled into our

New Nova? They stopped making them back in 1992 or 1993.

ps, I thought HF had an Astra? (t-i-c)
Should she really be driving ? - volvoman
Correct DD - it was a new Corsa.

BTW - I don't know what happened in the incident but simply posed the question as to why she just drove off afterwards when the chap was just a few feet away and walking towards her in the road. Most unusual for and old lady to do a bunk I'd have thought, so had she not seen him ? Was her eyesight OK ? I don't know and that's why I was asking.

Also, I did state quite clearly that there are other more serious problems on our roads than old drivers so please don't anyone assume I think old people are the cause of all our problems - far from it! However, it strikes me that driving is all about skill, anticipation, judgement and reactions - all of which tend to slowly desert us as we get older. At what point do we simply become too old to drive under modern condtions and are the current rules tough enough ?

As for young/ inexperienced drivers, yes they are far more likley to have serious accidents but surely that has more to do with inexperience, social conditions etc. than physiology.
Should she really be driving ? - HF
ROFLMAO DD!!!!!!!!!

I had wondered how long it would take for someone to equate this thread to me, but I hadn't thought it would be you who would stoop so low!!!
HF ;)
Should she really be driving ? - Rob the Bus
HF - from what I can gather about DD, he hasn't stooped that low at all. He's had to stand on beer crates to get to that level!!!

(;-) Dave!!)

Value my car