Despite motorhomes starting to become popular with young families, many older drivers aged 70 and over still cherish driving their motorhome. The number of older drivers is expected to exceed 4.5 million by 2015 according to the Department for Transport who have released a report that shows there is no age-related increase in accidents for the over 70s. In fact the study showed that older drivers have far fewer crashes than their younger counterparts. People in the UK are living longer and staying more active until much later in life, by 2014, projections suggest over 70 year olds will be more prevalent than the under-16s.
A UK driving licence automatically expires when a driver reaches the age of 70, after this they have to renew every three years because, in many cases, health deteriorates with age. This is not always the case as some 70-year olds are much more alert and active (not to mention experienced) than when they were younger. In fact during the last 12 months older drivers accounted for only 8% of the national total serious accidents and older drivers are only 11% more likely to claim on their insurance than drivers aged between 40 and 50. The biggest problem for the over 70s is the stance taken by the insurance industry, as many insurance companies feel that older drivers are as high a risk as the under 25s and some will refuse to cover the driver. The older a person gets the more limited they will be in the number of available polices. This is where an insurance broker can be useful in finding motorhome insurance at a competitive price.
A group of researchers from Newcastle University is using £12 million of funding to investigate new ways to make old people safer on the road and keep them behind the wheel for longer, improving their independence and social life. Some of the technologies under consideration included bespoke satellite navigation systems, night vision displays and intelligent vehicle speed systems. The research seeks to ensure that older drivers don’t get left behind as digital technology becomes widespread. A sat-nav system that avoids higher-risk situations, including right turns across busy intersections, is among the adaptations the researchers believe could improve the confidence and safety of older drivers. As motorhome owners are often in unfamiliar places it is thought that this piece of technology will be of great help to older drivers.