Voluntary Driver's License Returns Hit Record High in 2019

Society

Tokyo, March 9 (Jiji Press)--The number of people who voluntarily gave up their driver's licenses in 2019 reached 601,022, up by 179,832 from the preceding year, National Police Agency data showed Monday.

The figure is the highest since the system to return licenses was introduced in 1998. People aged 75 or over accounted for 350,428, or 58 pct, of the total, and those aged 74 or under for 250,594, up by 121,493 year on year.

The growth in voluntary returns is believed to have reflected heightened public interest following a string of traffic accidents by elderly drivers, including a high-profile case last April in which a woman in her 30s and her three-year-old daughter were hit and killed by a car driven by a man aged nearly 90 in Tokyo's Ikebukuro district.

Certificates of driving history can be issued to those who voluntarily give up their licenses, making them eligible for reduced taxi fares and other benefits.

According to the police agency, some 5.82 million people aged 75 or over held driver's licenses as of the end of last year.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press