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Drive or Die
Date:3/13/2009

meone of advanced age should stop driving. Crash rates per mile driven increase for people in their 60s and go up substantially among drivers over 70. In fact, only teenagers have higher crash risk than drivers aged 70 and older. Crash fatality rates for drivers over age 75 are actually higher than for all teenagers, except 16 year olds.

"Traditionally, family members are concerned about how to get older drivers to stop driving," said Dr. Edwards. "We now see there are also bad consequences from driving cessation."

Researchers believe that health and mortality declines associated with driving cessation reflect the importance of mobility in our society in meeting social, health care and autonomy needs.

"People really should keep driving as long as they can do so safely," Dr. Edwards advised. "There is other good news on this front from the latest studies on cognitive training and driving."

Dr. Edwards noted that other data from the SKILL Study showed that older drivers who used computer-based cognitive training were 40% less likely to stop driving and were able to maintain their driving patterns more safely.

Those older drivers trained with special computer technology designed to increase their "useful field of view" - the amount of visual information that can be processed in a single glance. Drivers who trained just 10 hours with UFOV(R) technology have been shown to reduce crash risk by 50% in a study presented in January to the Transportation Research Board of the National Academy of Sciences.

"Science has brought us new ways to improve and extend driving," said Dr. Edwards. "It does not need to be a choice between uneasiness about continued driving and negative outcomes from driving cessation. We can now train older drivers to drive more safely, longer."

The UFOV software became commercially available for the first time this past year as
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SOURCE Posit Science
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