JLE

Revue de neuropsychologie

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Successful aging and driving: can driving make one a successful ager? Volume 2, issue 2, juin 2010

Author
École de psychologie, Université d'Ottawa, Pavillon Montpetit (410A), 125 rue Université, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K1N 6N5 ; Membre de l'initiative pancanadienne Candrive

The assessment of older drivers’ competency is still considered a very sensitive issue for health professionals as well as for licensing authorities. To this day, there is still no off road test available to accurately assess the older driver's competency and to discriminate safe from unsafe drivers. The traditional assessment approach as it is applied to the field of aging and driving rests on the assumption that sensorimotor and cognitive functions must operate at a certain optimal level in order to drive a car safely and maintain a low level of crash risk. We question this univocal relationship on the basis of the recent multifactorial models of the older drivers that have recently appeared in the literature. We also echo the fact that off road assessment tests failed to discriminate safe from unsafe drivers. Finally, we refer to latest findings that suggest that driving can promote longevity and we use the successful aging framework to cast our standpoint.