Use Prince Philip’s Car Crash to Start a Conversation About When It’s Time to Stop Driving

Seniors want to be as independent as possible for as long as they can.
It’s understandable. After Britain’s Prince Philip was in a car crash, it brought up the topic of when is the right time to give up the keys. The 97-year-old prince has had health concerns in recent years, but he passed a vision test and still holds a valid license.


Elderly Care in Vienna VA: Time to Stop Driving

Elderly Care in Vienna VA: Time to Stop Driving


While police have yet to release a final report, witnesses say the prince said he was temporarily blinded by the sun when he pulled off a side road. His SUV flipped during the collision that left him and another woman with minor injuries. Police allegedly issued a warning a couple of days after the crash when the prince was seen driving and not wearing a seat belt.

This car crash and the resulting warning on not using a seat belt is a good example to use when talking to your own parents. Giving up keys may be hard, but safety is critical.


Here are the points you should have an open and honest discussion about.


What Does the Eye Doctor Say?

Peripheral vision, night vision, and standard vision measurements all help determine how safe it is for your parents to drive. If your mom’s peripheral vision changed and she can’t see objects to the side of her head, driving may not be recommended. If your dad’s vision is lower than 20/40 with corrective glasses or surgeries, his state’s laws may require him to stop driving.

Night vision is another issue. If headlight glare blinds your dad, he shouldn’t drive. Glaucoma is a common vision issue that can lead to glare.


Seat Belts Are Important

Some seniors stop wearing seat belts because they struggle to turn far enough to buckle them. Comfort is another issue. Are those true in your parent’s case? If so, there are items that make it easier. A seat belt buckle holder holds a seat belt buckle steady to make them easier to fasten. They’re designed for back seat use.

If the seat belt digs into your parents, a seat belt adjuster can help. There are also tools that help your parents reach and pull a seat belt across them to the buckle.


Are Your Parents Still Mobile?

Lack of mobility doesn’t mean your parents can’t drive, but there are certain things they need to be able to do. If your mom can’t turn her head to check blind spots, driving may not be a good idea. If your dad struggles to get his foot from the accelerator to the brake, he needs to stop driving.

When your parents can no longer safely drive, they don’t have to give up their freedom. Elder care services ensure they still go out as desired. A caregiver will drive them to stores, businesses, homes, and medical offices. Call an elder care agency to get started.


Are you or a loved-one considering Elderly Care in Vienna, VA?  Please call the caring staff at Medical Professionals On Call today. Contact: 703-273-8818