As people age, a steady decline may occur in certain skills that are important for safe driving. Beginning at around age 55, an individual's ability to process information, to remember, and to make judgments in traffic situations, such as determining the distance and approach of oncoming vehicles and pedestrians, gradually decreases. Furthermore, vision decreases, strength and flexibility diminishes and it takes longer to react to unexpected situations.
Functional and physical decline related to aging does not, however, affect all drivers at the same rate or in the same way. Although specific abilities needed to drive safely, such as vision, memory, physical strength, reaction time, and flexibility, decline as people age, the rate of change varies greatly.
This page describes what drivers can expect as they age in regards to a variety of functions and skills required to safely operating a motor vehicle.