Coroner Calls For Stricter Limits On Allowing Pensioners To Drive

Coroner Calls For Stricter Limits On Allowing Pensioners To Drive

After a pensioner on a mobility scooter was hit and killed by a 95-year-old driver, a senior coroner has called for urgent changes to the age limits for drivers in the UK.

According to Wales Online, 89-year-old Kathleen Fancourt died after being hit by a car driven by pensioner at a pedestrian crossing whilst the lights were green for pedestrians and red for traffic an inquest heard.

The upsetting incident occurred in Chichester, and the elderly driver has since pleaded guilty to dangerous driving. This incident has led coroner Penelope Schofield to address the issue of elderly drivers.

Although drivers over the age of 70 are required to apply for a new license every three years, there are no medical checks required to confirm they’re fit to drive under current law.

Instead, it is a self-declaration, and some people argue that elderly drivers should be required to retake a driving test to renew their licenses.

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A survey by and YouGov found that 70% of Brits think older drivers should be made to retake a test from the age of 60 due to the reasons such as slower reactions time.

Mrs Scholfield wrote to the Secretary of State for Transport, mark Harper MP and the chief executive of the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA), Julie Lennard to express her concern.

She said: “On Thursday, September 16, 2021, on Broyle Road in Chichester, West Sussex, Kathleen Fancourt was on her mobility scooter waiting at a pedestrian crossing.

“The crossing light was green for pedestrians and red for traffic. As Mrs Fancourt commenced to cross the road she was hit by a Peugeot car driving over the crossing.

“The driver of the car was 95 years old and has since this incident pleaded guilty to an offence of dangerous driving. The conclusion of the inquest was that Mrs Fancourt died an accidental death.

“During the course of the investigation, my inquiries revealed matters giving rise to concern. In my opinion, there is a risk that future deaths could occur unless action is taken.

“This accident was caused by a driver who was 95 years old. At present, there is no upper legal limit for drivers.

“Whilst drivers over 70 are required to apply for a new licence every three years, there is no requirement for there to be any form of medical check to confirm their fitness to drive.

“It is left to a self-declaration of any medical condition by the driver. There is a concern that if no checks are carried out a driver may be oblivious to their enduring medical condition and this may pose a serious risk to other road users.

“In my opinion, action should be taken to prevent future deaths and I believe you (and/or your organisation) have the power to take such action.”

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