Elderly Drivers Cause 379 Deadly Traffic Accidents in 2022
Tokyo, March 2 (Jiji Press)--The number of fatal traffic accidents caused by automobile and motorcycle drivers aged 75 or over in Japan in 2022 rose by 33 from the preceding year to 379, National Police Agency data showed Thursday.
Of all fatal traffic accidents last year, those caused by elderly drivers accounted for 16.7 pct, up from 15.1 pct in 2021 and the highest level since data became available in 1986, with the proportion hitting a record high for the second straight year.
The NPA estimates that one of the reasons behind the rise is an increase in the population of people aged 75 or over with driver's licenses, which came as first baby boomers, or those born between 1947 and 1949, have started to reach 75. The population stood at some 6.67 million in 2022, up from about 6.10 million in 2021.
The number of fatal traffic accidents per 100,000 elderly people with driver's licenses came to 5.7, more than double 2.5 per 100,000 drivers aged under 75.
Of 349 fatal automobile accidents caused by elderly drivers, 105 cases, the largest share, were caused by driving errors, including erroneously operating the steering wheel and mistakenly hitting the gas pedal for the brake.
[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]