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18 Jun 2019
Singapore Police Force
Suggestion View - 370
Seniors should retake driving test to renew licences

Perhaps the Traffic Police should consider making it compulsory for elderly drivers to retake their driving tests (Mounting car troubles, June 13).

Over the years, there have a number of reports of accidents involving elderly motorists knocking into other vehicles, as well as pedestrians.

It is already compulsory for seniors 65 years old and above, and holding classes 4A, 4 and 5 driving licences to take a driving proficiency test. There should be similar tests for those holding class 3 driving licences as well.

Traffic statistics have shown that drivers who are 60 and older are at greater risk of getting killed or hurt in road accidents. They accounted for 11.6 per cent of total casualties in 2009, rising to 15.6 per cent in 2012.

Most people over the age of 65 have diminished vision and hearing acuity, and slower reaction time.

These senses are crucial for safe driving and should be retested every year.

Retesting allows those who can drive safely to keep their licences. This in turn keeps roads safe.

Mandating retesting is not to discriminate against seniors, but to ensure that they can still safely operate a motor vehicle. This is to minimise the danger to themselves and the people around them.

In Japan, amid a spike in the number of accidents involving elderly drivers, the government implemented a tough cognitive function test for senior citizens who wish to renew their driving licences.

Cheng Choon Fei

Source: https://www.straitstimes.com/forum/letters-in-print/seniors-should-retake-driving-test-to-renew-licences


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