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Old 10-19-2015, 07:01 PM   #41
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Happened today in Houston:

HPD: One dead after SUV crashes into H-E-B | News - Home

74 is not that old.

One person is dead after an SUV crashed into an H-E-B on Monday, police said.The Houston Police Department said a gray Saturn sport utility vehicle crashed into the supermarket at 3111 Woodridge Drive at 1:40 p.m.The victim has been identified as a 31-year-old woman who had been shopping with her sister and 2-year-old toddler."It's something you don't ever want to see," witness Robert Trojna said.

Houston police said a 74-year-old woman got into her SUV, which was parked in a handicap spot outside the supermarket. "She then put the car in reverse and for unknown reasons accelerated rapidly," Houston Police Department spokesman Kese Smith said. Investigators said the driver crashed through the front doors, barreled into the register area and injured seven people -- five customers and two employees.

......."Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the face." -- philosopher Mike Tyson.
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Old 10-19-2015, 07:39 PM   #42
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One of our local hospitals has fancy driver simulator that can put anyone through a thorough driving simulation test. I think it costs $200. I offered to pay to test my father when he refused to give up driving. He ended up in the hospital for 2 1/2 months before I could schedule the test and was so disabled afterwards that even he realized driving was over at that point. Still this could be an independent resource to settle the debate if a family member is unrealistic.

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Old 10-19-2015, 08:17 PM   #43
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My friend's 80 year old mother got lost while driving to the grocery store, and she called her son. He asked her if there were any businesses around, and to drive up and hand the telephone to a person. The door greeter at Walmart answered--140 miles away.

Yep, there's a time when older adults need to hang it up.

We had to get full time help to take care of my parents, and they were driven around for about 5 years in their car.
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Old 10-19-2015, 08:46 PM   #44
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My mom is 91 and still drives, mostly to the grocery store and close by stuff. She doesn't have to go on freeways. I live several hours away so am not there to help her.

She sometimes gets rides from others when she needs to see doctors across town or go somewhere and would have to go on a freeways. The thing that amazes me is that she sometimes gets a ride from a neighbor....who is in her late 90s! (To be fair, I know the neighbor and she really does seem to be much younger than her age).

A couple of times she has used the service to transport elderly people to and from the doctor but she finds it inconvenient with too much waiting.

I've encouraged her to just call a cab. She doesn't go very many places, mostly grocery store and doctors, with occasional banking or other shopping needs. She could take a cab to and from every bit of it without it being a huge expense. All of it except a few doctors is fairly close by. But, she is extremely frugal and I haven't been able to talk her into using cabs yet. And, like many, she is very stubborn.
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Old 10-19-2015, 09:09 PM   #45
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My brother is 84 and is still driving his GTO and flying his high performance airplanes. Not sure how long this can last but so far he's doing fine.
"The best thing about the future is that it happens one day at a time." -- A. Lincoln
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Old 10-19-2015, 09:31 PM   #46
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Both are in their early 90's. Mom quit about 10 years ago but dad still drives. No freeways and no night driving. At this point, he probably puts about 1000 miles a year on his car. Maybe.
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Old 10-19-2015, 09:52 PM   #47
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Mom quit voluntarily at 80 , Dad had his lic revoked at about 78 Dad blew a red light , then failed to pullover for the motor officer who saw it, took 4 police cars to box him in , then he stopped The officer pulled his lic , the dmv gave him several tries at both written and behind the wheel test. It was devastating , his car was his freedom. He had been covering up dementia for some time.

As a teenager, one of my friends lived with his grandfather " Pop ". Pop drove until 104. I rode with him, his driving skills were ok, but kept bumping into other cars when parking. This guy was amazing, broke all the longevity "rules" ( diet , smoking, lack of exercise, sky high blood pressure ) Last saw him at 105, lost touch with that family after that.
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Old 10-19-2015, 11:35 PM   #48
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My 84-year-old dad (mom is deceased) has been in a few minor accidents in the last few years, not all of them his fault. He still drives but rarely at night. His ladyfriend died about a year ago so he isn't driving as much as he used to, especially at night.

Starting about 4 years, whenever I would be at his house (about a 2-minute drive from where I live), and we would go out together somewhere local, I would always drive even if it were daylight. And starting about 2 or 3 years ago, whenever we (and my ladyfriend) would drive from our area (Long Island, NY) to my brother's house in MA (about a 4-hour drive), I now do all the driving instead of splitting it about 2/3 for me and 1/3 for him. My brother had been bugging me to take over all the driving and I somewhat reluctantly agreed. My ladyfriend had also been bugging me to take over, too. He was driving only about the middle 1.25 hours of the trip to give me some rest, but it had been becoming a little tense with him behind the wheel even midday. But this was a much needed change (for the better) to our trip.
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Old 10-20-2015, 12:09 AM   #49
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Dad had bad legs and liked to lay on the couch petting his cat. So he didn't drive much and was getting worse. He was trying to sell his truck when I needed a truck and bought it. He said he never drove it but it was nice knowing it was in the driveway, he was about 76. Mom drove to her sister's for a party 240 miles from home, she asked my brother and his wife if one of them could drive her home, claimed her eyes hurt. So then whenever she wanted to see her sister or her boyfriend 300 miles away one of us would take her and drop her off. Then at 82 or so she moved in with my brother and then crashed her car t-boning at an intersection 2 blocks from home. She never was a good driver and lived with two younger retired people so didn't need to drive. When my brother took her to get her car from repair he asked how much longer she would drive and she said a couple of years. He asked if she was going to wait until she killed someone so she said he could sell her car. Then she started making excuses like she stopped at the stop sign so doesn't know how she hit them so hard so since she didn't understand it she gave up driving. Then she started telling people she moved in with her son for safety so giving up driving was for safety, making it sound like her idea.
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Old 10-20-2015, 05:46 AM   #50
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My dad just let my mom drive in his late 70's due to eye problems and passed away at 80. My mom drove until 88 when she drifted off the road and hit a tree and was bedridden until she died 7 months later.

I tell that story a lot to friends with older parents.

Most older people tie driving to independence - I think that is changing with the times - as long as you can get somewhere using Uber public transportation or a self driving car - you are independent. Look at 20 year olds now - car ownership is almost viewed as a burden.
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Old 10-20-2015, 06:33 AM   #51
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My parents stopped in the low mid 80s but they were in an assisted living facility and didn't really need a car. I have a brother and sister in their early 80s who both have retinitis pigmentosa (progressive loss of vision) but live in suburban houses where cars are more essential. My sister kept driving for years past her expiration date, getting to the point where she only went to the grocery store which required only a few right hand turns (taking advantage of the small box of clear vision left). Her kids finally sabotaged her old car and got her to quit. My brother's RP progressed more quickly and he had to quit driving a few years ago. His wife has some dementia and difficulty with directions so she drives and he tries to describe where to turn despite the fact that everything is a blur. It has gotten to the point that they really need to stop. They had to call one of the kids for a bail out when then made some wrong turns and got lost about two miles from home. DW and I live in a location where driving is an option we can quit whenever we want. We plan to stay where we are for as long as we can. We would not consider moving to a location where a car was essential.
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Old 10-20-2015, 06:39 AM   #52
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Bring on those self-driving cars. They can't arrive soon enough. While perfectly capable of driving, I am getting tired of the hassle of constantly watching out for the other "idiots," as my late Dad termed every other driver on the road. (I don't use the term, as it is offensive to the mentally challenged).

And make the self-driving cars affordable! I'd even go for a tax to provide an age-tested subsidy for self-driving cars.
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'There is only one success to be able to spend your life in your own way. Christopher Morley.
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Old 10-20-2015, 06:49 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by Amethyst View Post
Bring on those self-driving cars. They can't arrive soon enough. While perfectly capable of driving, I am getting tired of the hassle of constantly watching out for the other "idiots," as my late Dad termed every other driver on the road. (I don't use the term, as it is offensive to the mentally challenged).

And make the self-driving cars affordable! I'd even go for a tax to provide an age-tested subsidy for self-driving cars.
+1 We may all get a pass on the issue.
Every man is, or hopes to be, an Idler. -- Samuel Johnson
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Old 10-20-2015, 06:52 AM   #54
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My parents are still in their 60's, but I guess I can use my grandparents and some of their relatives as a gauge. So, here goes...

Granddad (maternal):73. Stopped after it was discovered he had lung cancer. Went in for surgery to see if they could remove the lung, discovered it had spread around to lymph nodes and such, and he went downhill after the surgery and died about 5 months later.

Grandmom (maternal): 74. She had macular degeneration, and it eventually got so bad she was afraid to drive. She didn't pass the driver's test at 75, and gave it up willingly.

Aunt Maie (Granddad's "baby" sister): Sometime in her late 80's. Oddly, she's almost 92 and still had 20/20 vision. But, her nerves, reflexes, etc, have slowed down, so her daughter drives her everywhere. She also fell and broke her wrist a couple years ago, and the doctors didn't reset it quite right, so I'm sure that's a factor.

Edith (Granddad's cousin): 89. She's about to turn 91. I think she still has her driver's license, but she's had a few issues. Macular degeneration, but unlike Grandmom, her's was the type that could be operated on, and that's helped to some degree. But, that kept her off the road, and she's had relatives drive her around. Then early this year she slipped and fell on the ice and broke her shoulder. I think it healed pretty well, but she still has vision issues and bright lights bother her. Plus, her car is a nose-heavy FWD '89 Coupe DeVille with leaky power steering that her son refills when it gets too low. If she was ever out in public somewhere when the fluid level got too low, she'd be stranded. She still has a lot of fight and pep in her, but I doubt she'll ever drive again. Fortunately, she has a pretty good network of friends and relatives to help her get around.

Granddad (paternal): 90. Gave it up willingly. Mainly because he didn't drive that much any more. My Dad lives with him, and was doing most of the driving by that time, so Granddad thought having an additional car, plus his car insurance, was wasted money. He was actually still a pretty good driver at the time, but figured it was time to give it up.

Grandmom (maternal): 76-77. She got sick and passed away pretty quickly, and I'm sure she still had her license. However, she rarely drove. I always remembered, as a kid, that whenever we went anywhere it was always Granddad who drove.
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Old 10-20-2015, 09:15 AM   #55
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Dad drove until age 94 when a stroke caused him to have his license lifted. Another stroke took his life 6 months later.

MIL had her license lifted after a botched cataract operation ruined her sight. She was 90. It cause her to give up golfing. She died at age 93 from lung cancer.

Both of them always drove during the day on roads they knew during their latter years.
For the fun of it...Keith
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Old 10-20-2015, 03:36 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by MRG View Post
Spot on. A buddy had RP and was going blind. Those who knew him didn't want him driving on his OK. drivers licence. At that time OK. didn't make you retake the vision test. He finally got pulled over and the MO. officer took his OK. license. Few months later an Optometrist claimed he tested 20/40 so off he goes driving again. The guy had told me he could not have passed the test on his own, the Optometrist had helped him pass.

After a pair of DUIs earned on a 3 day drunk, the driving ended. Luckily nobody was hurt.
My aunt has RP (scary and hope I don't get it) and still has her license. She hasn't driven in 2 or 3 years. Her husband is going for surgery in November and will need a driver. He wants to take her out to a driving course to see if she can still drive. I don't understand this, when many family members and their friends have offered to drive them. I take her shopping and she runs into me all the time and trips over BIG things that a normal sighted person would see. If I am out of her circle of vision she can't see me and I could only be a few feet away. Why would you want to put someone like this behind the wheel of a car.
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Old 10-20-2015, 03:57 PM   #57
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I am planning my giving up of license. I need a new house and will be sticking to areas with access buses so when I can't drive safely I don't need to. My boyfriend bought a farm 20 miles to the nearest grocery store and is 68 now. He will drive until he dies unless someone stops him. He smokes so hopefully he can drive safely as long as he can breathe, his dad drove until the end, not to safely hit other cars if they shouldn't have been there.
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Old 10-20-2015, 04:11 PM   #58
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This is why I want them to get a move on for the self driving car! I'll settle for a greatly assisted driving car.
If it is after 5:00 when I post I reserve the right to disavow anything I posted.
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Old 10-20-2015, 04:49 PM   #59
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We figure we will probably buy only one or two more cars being in our midsixties, as we keep them for a long time and will hand over the keys without complaint when our driving days are over. We looked at a new Honda Accord Touring sedan today that sort of will drive itself (maybe a lot of cars have these systems but we haven't looked at new cars for six years). We were interested in its safety equipment--back up cameras, etc., but this car (and probably many others) has much more.

The sales staff said they took it on an extensive test drive on the highway (not with customers in the car!) and let it drive itself for a few miles by keeping their hands off the steering wheel and their feet off the gas and brakes. Way beyond alerting the driver that the car is too close to something, it comes with a "road departure mitigation system" and a "lane keeping assist system" with which the car detects the lane lines and steers to keep the car inside them; the "adaptive cruise control" maintains the interval to the car ahead; and the "collision mitigation braking system" stops the car if a forward collision is imminent. Not officially a self-driving car but much of the technology is already in place. The car comes with a Garmin navi system, and I imagine the next step will be to coordinate the maneuvering systems with the destination information.

Of course people who can no longer drive themselves because of mental confusion (my late MIL, for example, who insisted at 85 that a parked semitruck was aiming at her when she hit it head-on--umm, okay, but if so, so why didn't she steer out of the way, or hit the brakes?) are not going to know how to activate or deactivate these systems or to drive in concert with them, so they will be even more confused by them. I hope we become comfortable using them long before we might be confused by them!
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Old 10-20-2015, 08:02 PM   #60
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My dad is 90 and no longer drives, thank God. From about 85 to 90 his memory for where things were, and even for where he was trying to go, were deteriorating. He would sometimes do a U turn on a divided highway because he was lost. First we got him to agree to only driving in the daytime. This seemed to be OK but even so he continued to get lost and drive and drive and drive, finally finding his way home. He refused to carry a cell phone of course. He was a burden on those around him (as is often the case with old folks, unfortunately). Now he has finally agreed not to drive anymore, and we have even sold his car, with his permission. He was getting to be quite unsafe. My mom who is 92 is still a fairly safe driver.

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