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Accid Anal Prev. 1998 May;30(3):305-12.

Why do older drivers give up driving?

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Department of Psychology, University of Helsinki, Finland.


All Finnish license holders aged 70 years (from the cohort born in 1922) who did not renew their driver license, and a corresponding comparison group among those who did renew their license, were contacted by a mail survey. They were asked about their reasons to continue or to stop driving, about their current living conditions and health status, and about some aspects of their driving behavior. The reasons to stop or to continue driving were different for men and women. Male drivers considered more frequently than female drivers the use of private car a necessity. Male respondents who did not renew their license (ex-drivers) were less healthy than those who did renew their license (drivers). The most frequently indicated reason to stop driving among men was deteriorated health. However, only 6.9% of the ex-drivers had received professional advice to stop driving. For most of these cases, this advice had been given by the physician responsible for the treatment of their main illness. The change in health condition was related to a shift in driving activity: those still driving were in best health, followed by those ex-drivers who stopped driving at the age of 70 years, while those who had stopped driving at an earlier age had the highest number of illnesses and had most frequently experienced a deterioration of their health status during the last year. Both male and female ex-drivers reported more feelings of stress in traffic and more frequent avoidance of certain traffic situations than drivers. Women reported more frequently traffic-related stress and avoidance than men as both drivers and ex-drivers.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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