Research has shown that older motorhome owners who use medication including sleeping pills, anti-depressants and mood stabilisers are 29% much more likely to be involved in an accident. The study examined local hospital/crash statistics to discover the increased danger for older people on the road. The study examined the case history of drivers aged 60 and over and who were hospitalised as the result of an accident over the last 6 years.
Because of the results of the research, mobile home owners are being urged to disclose every tablet they are taking to their motorhome insurance company to avoid finding out too late that their policy has become invalid due to them not disclosing certain types of medication.
Without doubt insurers are aware that some medications have the possibility of slowing reaction times and when age is taken into account, the insurance premiums will need to be adjusted making cheap insurance hard to find. This is where an insurance broker can use their contacts to find a competitive quote that takes medication into account. Up to one million people taking prescribed antidepressants currently hold a valid UK driving licence and although motorhome owners only make up a small percentage of this number, there are calls for the public to be better educated about the dangers of using medication and road safety.
The study is one of the first of its kind in the United Kingdom and has attracted attention internationally both for its results and the method of linking hospital data with the drugs being taken. By linking the data it was possible to see the link between drivers taking particular medications and those who had a crash and who were hospitalised. The results should not see any extra restrictions put on older drivers and it is hoped that the results can be used to make sure older drivers continue to have a better quality of life and continue to enjoy holidays in their motorhome and may in fact improve their longevity.