Over 70s 'safer than young drivers'

A motoring survey has revealed that elderly drivers, commonly thought of as some of the most careless on the nation's roads, are actually among the safest.

Researchers at the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM) looked at the number of crashes between 2000 and 2006 and who was responsible for them.

It found that only 4% of crashes that resulted in injury were caused by drivers over 70 who account for 8% of the motoring population.

In stark contrast, younger drivers, who make up 15% of all motorists on the road, were responsible for 34% of injury crashes, despite making less journeys than their elders.

On average, men in their 70s were found to make at least 100 more trips as car drivers per year than men in their late teens and 20s, according to the Older Drivers - Safe or Unsafe report.

Neil Greig, IAM director of policy and research, said: "The report contradicts the common assumption that older drivers are a danger on the roads.

"The IAM recommends that, rather than seeking to prevent older people from driving, we need to make them aware of the risks they face, and offer them driving assessments to help them cope with these risks."

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