Client Groups – Seniors

Senior Drivers – Did You Know?

Statistics disprove some of the preconceptions about drivers aged 65 or older. Here are a few.

Drivers aged 65 or older are less likely to be involved in traffic accidents

In 2016, 1,047,221 driver's licence holders were aged 65 or older, that is, 19% of all driver's licence holders. However, they only represented 12% of drivers involved in accidents resulting in bodily injuries.

Numbers to prove it

From 2012 to 2016, each year, on average:

  • 87 drivers aged 65 or older were involved in fatal accidents, representing 16% of all drivers involved in this type of accident
  • 226 drivers aged 65 or older were involved in accidents resulting in serious injuries, representing 11% of all drivers involved in this type of accident
  • 4,765 drivers aged 65 or older were involved in accidents resulting in minor injuries, representing 11% of all drivers involved in this type of accident

To compare, drivers between the ages of 16 and 24 were involved in 20% of accidents resulting in bodily injuries even though they only represent 9% of driver's licence holders.

Accidents among drivers aged 65 or older

Drivers aged 65 or older are proportionally involved in fewer accidents resulting in bodily injuries than all driver's licence holders.

However, in the event of an accident, people aged 65 or older are more likely to sustain fatal injuries. These people represent a higher proportion of deceased victims than injured victims.

Useful information

Left turns on unprotected green lights

This is the situation that results in the majority of accidents involving senior drivers.

Eyesight is important!

The vast majority of the information that a driver needs to drive safely passes through the eyes.

Among seniors, there is:

  • a longer adaptation period following changes in brightness
  • decreased sensitivity to contrast
  • decreased eyesight

Significant increase in the number of senior drivers

From 2011 to 2016, the number of driver's licence holders aged 65 or older increased by 28%, compared to 4% for all driver's licence holders.

Today, there are nearly 1 million drivers aged 65 or older out of the 5,4 million Québec drivers.

The number of driver's licence holders aged 65 or older should reach 1.5 million in 2030, since one-quarter of the Québec population will be in that age category.

Traffic accidents involving senior drivers don't always occur when we expect them

Accidents involving senior drivers generally occur in favourable driving conditions – during the daytime, in good weather, and on dry pavement that is in good condition. These are the conditions in which seniors are most likely to drive.

Your car can be adapted!

If you have a disability, an occupational therapist can help you compensate for certain physical limitations by recommending that you have your vehicle adapted. This may include:

  • installing a steering wheel spinner
  • installing an accelerator pedal on the left

For more information, visit our section entitled Adapting or Purchasing a Vehicle .