The number of drivers over the age of 80 now stands at more than one million according to information obtained by the IAM.
DVLA figures obtained through a freedom of information request show that there are now 1,012,399 drivers aged over 80 years. There are also 122 licence holders over the age of 100.
However, the IAM says that, ‘contrary to common assumptions’, drivers in their eighties are not dangerous, and are in fact much safer than their more youthful counterparts.
The rate of deaths and serious injuries in crashes among drivers more than 80 is three times less than the rate for those aged 17-19, according to the IAM. However, older drivers are more likely to suffer serious injuries in a crash due to their frailty.
Simon Best, IAM chief executive, said: “Older people need their cars to give them better mobility and access to more activities and services. Those who wish to continue driving beyond the age of 70 should only be prevented from doing so if there are compelling reasons.
“Rather than seeking to prevent older people from driving, we should make them more aware of the risks they face, and offer them driving assessments to help them eliminate bad habits. Driving helps older people play a full and active part in society.”
For more information contact the IAM Press Office on 020 8996 9777.