Elderly Drivers Cause 401 Fatal Accidents in Japan in 2019

Society

Tokyo, Feb. 13 (Jiji Press)--There were 401 fatal traffic accidents caused by drivers aged 75 or over in Japan in 2019, down by 59 from the previous year, the National Police Agency said Thursday.

Of the total, 358 were car accidents. Steering, braking and other driving errors were blamed in 107, or about 30 pct, of the 358 cases. The rate for younger drivers stood at 12 pct.

The overall number of fatal traffic accidents in 2019 came to 2,780, down by about 1,600 from a decade ago, according to the NPA. Of the 2019 total, the elderly driver cases accounted for 14.4 pct, the second highest after the record high logged in 2018.

A total of 5,826,673 people aged 75 or over held driver's licenses in Japan as of the end of 2019. The number of fatal accidents per 100,000 license holders stood at 6.9 for the elderly, compared with 3.1 for those under 75.

Drivers aged 85 or over were responsible for 72 of the 401 elderly driver cases. The 72 cases include a high-profile accident in April in which a car driven by a man, then 87, hit a 31-year-old woman and her three-year-old daughter in Tokyo's Ikebukuro district. The man failed to stop his car at a red light.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press