WHAT WOULD YOU DO?

better than a car!
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
May 2, 2016 11:21am CST
Okay, I have a problem--or I have made it my problem--here are the facts. I have a friend who at 85 is still very active at his job--he feels he will live forever which, I guess, is a good but not realistic attitude. He has recently acknowledged that his body is slowing down. A few weeks ago he had a head on collision--his fault--no one was hurt except for his black and blue marks plus a lot of soreness from the two airbags (side and front)--his car was totaled--the second he has totaled in 3 years--he has had a few tickets for various offenses. He won't give up driving--he loves his job--it gets him out of the house (he is climbing walls after 3 weeks of being home)--his partner wants him to think of retiring but he won't which I can understand but I have suggested his cutting back, mainly on the area he works and the deliveries he makes. They do live in an area that is somewhat isolated--not near buses or shopping areas--but I suggested that it would be cheaper for them to use cabs which in the long run would probably be cheaper. He has bought a new (used) car--I am sort of hoping his insurance hike will be so great he might think twice but I don't think so, that is if they even agree to insure him. My greatest fear is that he won't die of old age but in an automobile accident in which he might cause the death of another person in another car. His partner won't talk to their doctor--nor do I think he really wants him to give up having a car. I feel helpless which isn't something I feel in any other situation. WHAT WOULD YOU DO?
12 people like this
14 responses
@JohnRoberts (62973)
• Los Angeles, California
2 May 16
From what you describe, it is time for him to hang it up driving. Next time, someone else may be hurt and he can't continue buying cars. That's tough if his partner isn't encouraging him to do so. You can only push so far on the subject. State your case and alternative solutions.
2 people like this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
3 May 16
I have--my next step is to call our Senior Agency and see what they can do or suggest.
@Hatley (164485)
• Garden Grove, California
21 May 16
@GreatMartin thats a great idea
@garymarsh6 (14430)
• United Kingdom
2 May 16
If he has had three crashes I would certainly question his driving abilities. Delayed reaction times I wonder if he has cataracts too? I would have thought that perhaps after his third crash he would have realised himself. I guess he does not want to give in and keep going and does not want to face reality!
2 people like this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
3 May 16
He is a dying breed-one of the last--a Fuller Brush salesman--he needs the car to work BUT he doesn't have to work as though they aren't rich they are comfortable--as like most old people he feels if you take away his car he loses his freedom.
@JudyEv (134919)
• Bunbury, Australia
3 May 16
This is a difficult one. I don't know that there is much you can do unless you think his driving is so dangerous that you should approach the police or local authorities or whoever handles such stuff.
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
4 May 16
I am seriously thinking of calling the Senior Elderly Affairs group here to see what they say can be done.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134919)
• Bunbury, Australia
4 May 16
@GreatMartin We were speaking to someone yesterday who is buying a new car. His other one is very old and his mother drives it. This one is higher and she won't be able to see to drive it. It is his way of getting her off the road. Funny that it came up so soon after reading your post.
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
6 May 16
@JudyEv The thing that people have to remember is that if you take a car away YOU have to offer their transportation of some within easy/inexpensive reach.
1 person likes this
@Corbin5 (115890)
• United States
2 May 16
The DMV passed my dad at age 92 and renewed his license despite the huge dents on Dad's car. In order for Dad to have his car at the assisted living facility, because Dad's doctor called the facility and said Dad should not be driving, the facility said Dad could have his car there if he were tested at Marion Joy Rehabilitation Center and passed. Nope. Dad failed big time at the rehab center and the state of IL was notified that my dad could not longer drive. I would find a rehab center that tests senior drivers, which is an extensive test of cognitive and physical abilities, and if your friend passes, then so be it. However, if the center says "no" the state will be notified and that will be the end of the driving.
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
3 May 16
But he doesn't have to go to the rehab place and won't!
1 person likes this
@Corbin5 (115890)
• United States
3 May 16
@GreatMartin And there is the problem. Dad only went because that was the only way he could have his car at the senior living place. Dad really was a danger to himself and others on the road. There is no way you can force someone to stop driving if the pros do not intervene.
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
4 May 16
@Corbin5 Going to have to get the Pros if his partner won't do anything though I know I will lose them as friends.
1 person likes this
@amadeo (73118)
• United States
2 May 16
Very hard Martin.Do I know this person.He should either stop or take a defense driving Course that AARP hold. Many older citizen do this.Is he alert,how is the mind so many thing.Giving up driving is very hard on the elders. They want to hang on to this.But then again we do not want him to hurt anyone while driving. Sounds like he needs to be busy.Find out a way what he can do.Without the use of a car.
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
3 May 16
He has taken the Defensive Driving course but it is his sitting and listening to what they have to say--they don't in anyway test them behind a wheel!!
@amadeo (73118)
• United States
3 May 16
@GreatMartin oh they do not take you out on the road. Just an oral test?Do you know what cause the crash?
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
4 May 16
@amadeo No, no road test--and you get a new license EVERY 8 years!!!
@jacksta1 (111)
• Indonesia
5 May 16
What you are doing is correct, as colleagues of course also have an obligation to provide advice and input, that in his advanced age is very dangerous when driving alone. Besides the already weakened physical condition, of vision has also been reduced. If happens in the street, it is bound to harm himself and even would interfere with the safety of other road users. And it should be considered.
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
6 May 16
But all he know is that he has to stop working and give up his freedom--explain that to someone you love and care for.
@PainsOnSlate (20524)
• Canada
4 May 16
You are between a rock and a hard place. I have no idea what I would do so I can't imagine what you will do. He shouldn't be driving, with his accident history, it might be time to move to the city with public transit.
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
6 May 16
Their home is paid for so they won't listen to that! :O)
1 person likes this
@lokisdad (4264)
• United States
2 May 16
Maybe someone can drive him around and he can keep his job. Some activity or vacation plans would make things better too
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
3 May 16
They can on vacations every year--to Australia, on cruises, last year Chine, etc., It all hast to do with the old person's mindset--take the car and you take their freedom. I can understand to a certain extent as I haven't had a car for 12 years--can't afford the insurance!! Fort Lauderdale is not an easy city to get around without a car.
• United States
2 May 16
It's very difficult saying what should be done and when it's time to give up driving. I just hope he doesn't have a major accident which will take the decision out of his hands
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
3 May 16
That' s the one thing I am worreid about along what if he kills someone in an accident!!
@sulynsi (2836)
• Canada
2 May 16
I feel sorry for you, there really is not much that you can do. I am surprised, with the history of offenses, that the ministry of transport, or whatever the licensing agency is in the area, hasn't stepped in. Of course, many folks who have their licenses suspended still drive, so if the person is so determined to drive, they will still go out and take risks. Not just his own safety, but as you mentioned, he may kill someone else. His attitude is completely self centered, so I doubt he would care much about it, or would convince himself that he's hurting no one, just as he is not convinced, after totaling two cars, that he has no problem. There are none so blind as those who will not see, as the saying goes. By the same token, I feel sorry for older people, who really lose a lot of their autonomy through the cruel process of aging.
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
3 May 16
Yes it is that loss of mobility and freedom that makes an old person not see the consequences that can happen from what they are doing.
@Teep11 (7137)
• United States
2 May 16
He really sounds as if he needs to give up on driving. He can use a taxi or Uber but trying to drive isn't safe for your friend. I hope he considers stopping. I'm glad he's alright from the accident.
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
3 May 16
He is fine but taking uber or a cab is not the same as having your own car. I told him to just uber but he says he can't do his work that way--he needs a car!
@jaboUK (55053)
• United Kingdom
15 May 16
I don't think there is a lot you can do. Actually I'd be surprised if he could get insured after this latest accident.
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
15 May 16
And he just had his license renewed for 8 years without any tests--well an eye test but that is it!
1 person likes this
@jaboUK (55053)
• United Kingdom
15 May 16
@GreatMartin It's a farce here too - we do have to renew our licence every 3 years after age 70, but we don't actually have to take any tests - just say that we're not suffering from such and such, and hey presto your licence for another 3 years.
1 person likes this
• Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
15 May 16
@jaboUK Well I don't have to renew my license until 2021!!! LOL
1 person likes this
@Hatley (164485)
• Garden Grove, California
21 May 16
ow that is a tough one I would feel like I should intervene yet I would not want to htr the old fellows feelings eitther I g uess any i ntervention should come from relatives I guess I g uess I would be in the same fix you are I would hate to think hemight kill himself in an ac ident and other people too his partner should put in a word about this
@LeaPea2417 (21997)
• Toccoa, Georgia
18 May 16
Tell him your concerns , but it is good that he has a zest for life at his age, that is great. I am sure he can still live a full life without driving.