The elderly, age group 65 or older, tend to face complications in the driving system. According to a NHTS report, in the year 2020 the elderly made up 17 percent of all traffic fatalities.
These complications come from routine traffic routines easily completed by younger licensed drivers but are difficult for elderly people. Elderly drivers tend to struggle to understand traffic signs with low reflectance driving through complicated intersections or turns.
Former AARP Senior Driving Instructor Claudia Fisher explains common complications of elderly driving. "As you get older, you have less light coming into your eyes," she said. "So, you aren't seeing as well at night, and then some complain about the glare from on-coming headlines and stuff."
LSU has teamed with the U.S. Department of Transportation to complete a three-part research experiment. This research aims to identify major safety concerns for elderly driving as well as create solutions to help.
LSU Transportation Engineering Dept. Ph.D. candidate Saba Doulabi explained the department's research. "We are analyzing history called crash data in order to identify the most difficult conditions leading them to having crashes on the road," he said.
The use of a life-like driving simulator located in LSU's engineering building will help in the research process. This simulator will allow participants of the experiment to be emerged in real-life driving situations for observation of their normal responses.
Hassan, along with the help of his students, will continue in their research. This research will be used to find solutions to elderly driving concerns, such as the use of autonomous vehicles for safer travel.