Fair Or Biased? Seniors May Have To Take A Driving Test In Texas
I recently went on a lovely vacation with my parents, and part of our trip involved driving to a famous and fabulous museum. Dad drove while I purchased our tickets online, and I discovered something that surprised me- we would save $4 on Mom's ticket because she is now what that institution considers a "senior."
My mother is a capable, intelligent, and vigilant person, should she have to prove her prowess to drive? In Texas, she's many years off from having to (possibly) prove herself, but other states have stricter rules. At what age do seniors have to re-test to keep their driver's license in Texas? And is it fair?
There is no formal senior re-testing age in Texas; however, that does not mean that seniors are subject to the same lenient rules as the rest of us. Per our DPS website, seniors 79 and older are required to renew their driver's license in person, pass a vision test, and give responses about their medical history.
You will only be required to take a driving test or obtain additional information from your physician if, after being evaluated, it is determined that you may not be able to safely operate a motor vehicle.
That seems pretty lenient and fair on the surface, but are we being unfairly biased towards older drivers? Well, not if we are going by the numbers. People 80 and older not only tend to crash more but there is also a dramatic increase in fatalities when they do have accidents. So there must be a balance struck between allowing adults to have sovereignty and independence, but also common sense measures to keep them (and other folks on the road) safe.
The main reason my parents and I took our vacation was to visit my grandmother- who has voluntarily given up driving as a personal preference. Instead, she uses an Uber to get where she needs to go (probably making friends with the driver each time) and has her groceries delivered. For her, it wasn't giving anything up, it was freeing herself from a chore. I'm glad she made this decision for herself, rather than having any right of hers taken away.
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