Fatal Accidents by Elderly Drivers in Japan Up 10 Pct in 2018

Society

Tokyo, Feb. 14 (Jiji Press)--The number of fatal accidents caused by drivers aged 75 or older in Japan in 2018 rose 10.0 pct from the previous year to 460, National Police Agency data showed Thursday.

The figure was the third highest in the past 10 years. Those cases accounted for 14.8 pct of all fatal traffic accidents in the country last year, up 1.9 percentage points, hitting the highest level since the statistics began in 1990.

By accident type, the number of elderly driver-caused fatal accidents between vehicles totaled 202. Of them, 85 were head-on collisions mainly at intersections. The number of single-vehicle accidents stood at 176.

Mishandling the steering wheel or brake was the top cause of the fatal accidents, totaling 136 cases, followed by inadequate checks for safety at 105 cases.

The revised road traffic law that came into force in March 2017 obliges drivers to obtain medical diagnosis if they are judged possible dementia sufferers in tests during license renewal and other procedures.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press