Recently in State Highway Administration Category

October 3, 2012

Older Driver Safety in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia

According to the Associated Press, older drivers are on the road more than ever before. Nearly 34 million drivers are 65 or older. By 2030, deferral estimates show there will be about 57 million, making up about a quarter of all licensed drivers.

Older drivers have the highest rate of deadly crashes per mile even though they don't drive as often as younger drivers. Measured by miles driven, older drivers crash rates begin to rise in their 70s and even more in their 80s, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

Health Issues can also impair older drivers. Health issues such as: arthritis and dementia, slower reflexes and they also use multiple medications, which can impair their driving. On average, about 60% of seniors voluntarily cut back their driving. Most avoid driving at night, on interstates and during bad weather. Older drivers seem to have more difficulty with intersections, making left turns, and changing lanes and/or merging. This is due to their gradual decline in vision and reaction times that come with aging.

In the District of Columbia seniors are required to have more vision tests, are required to renew their licenses more often than younger drivers and starting at the age of 70, older drivers must submit a doctor's certification that they are healthy enough to drive every time they renew their licenses. In Maryland, the Motor Vehicle Administration requires all people, starting at the age of 40, to take eye exams, and in Virginia, starting at the age of 80, drivers must renew their license in person and also pass an eye exam.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration proposed a national guideline for older driver safety earlier this summer. The proposal recommends that every state needs a program to improve older driver safety, doctors should be protected from lawsuits id they report a possibly unsafe driver and driver's licenses should be renewed in person after a certain age. These recommendations would push states to become more consistent and have safer roads.

September 14, 2011

Fatal Crashes on the Rise In Anne Arundel County, Maryland

Anne Arundel County, Maryland has had eight pedestrians and one bicyclist killed by motor vehicles so far this year. A study conducted by the State Highway Administration between 2006 and 2010 reported that 9 pedestrians were killed in 2006, 13 in 2009 and 12 in 2010. None were killed in 2007 or 2008. The number of pedestrians injured between 2006 and 2010 was reported to be 197.

The Anne Arundel Police will therefore start to stop drivers and pedestrians who violate the rules of the road, which include; jaywalkers, hit and run drivers, drivers who ignore bicycle lanes and drivers who run red lights and stop signs. Justin Mulcahy, Anne Arundel Police spokesman, said, "The goal is education and enforcement." The most troubling of these situations are hit-and-run drivers, because the drivers who flee the scene after a pedestrian is hit may be able to aid the pedestrian and keep the person from dying.

The roads where vehicle have struck pedestrians and bicyclists will be targeted, mostly. These areas include Hospital Driver near Crain Highway in Glen Burnie, Maryland, Fort Smallwood Road in Pasadena, Maryland and Jumpers Hole Road and Ritchie Highway. Other areas will also be in routes of patrol, but these are the major areas were fatal accidents have occurred in Anne Arundel and Baltimore City, Maryland.