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Car Insurance For Elderly drivers

The insurance industry has taken the kind of approach we have come to expect and erred on the side of caution. Now many drivers from the age of 60 onwards can expect to see their insurance go up.

It was already common practice for drivers over the age of 80 to experience higher premiums because they are, statistically speaking, a far greater risk on the road.

Esure and Norwich Union are both notably refusing to offer insurance to drivers aged 70 or over.

Cornhill won't take on new policies for customers aged 84 or over however they will renew existing customer's policies indefinitely.

Age Concern and Help the Aged offer some respite for elderly drivers because they do not set any upper age limits at all. Saga and RIAS also have no policy relating to setting an age limit.

If 7,035 car accidents in which a driver was either critically injured or killed last year, 8% involved a driver aged over 70. That's equivalent to 550 accidents. As a result, the over 70's group has proved itself to be a bigger danger on the roads than any other.

More statistics released by The Association of British Insurers tell the same story - over 70's drivers make 13% more car insurance claims than drivers in the 40-50 age bracket.

Elderly drivers pay more for Car Insurance

Over the next ten years, the amount of elderly drivers on the road will be double what it is now. Thanks to advances in medical care, people are simply living, and driving, for longer. This will inevitably mean more accidents on our roads.

As a result of the perceived increased risk, someone aged 75 will pay 33% more than a 50 year old with exactly the same personal details and driving history. Drivers aged 80 are heavily penalised, it's like being 21 again! The best deals are reserved for people in their early 50's, however they won't get long to enjoy the price cuts.

Women get an even rougher deal. Apparently, women's driving gets worse with age, so their premiums will rise and rise as they get older. Elderly women drivers pay even more than the men do.

It's a fact that as people get older, their reactions get slower and eyesight often becomes weaker. With more cars on the road and new complicated traffic systems being built, it's understandable that some elderly drivers can get confused. There really isn't any room for error on our busy roads and as a result, some insurance companies are asking elderly drivers to undertake a medical examination before they will agree to insure them.

There's a few things you can do to help the situation - firstly, do your very best to hang onto your no claims discount and get no claims protection too, that will pay for itself in the long term. Even if you do have a minor bump, pay for it yourself rather than making a claim on your policy.

There are also things you can do to lessen your chances of having an accident. Be more careful than you used to be - particularly in car parks where cars are parked closely together, and other cars can appear out of nowhere. Take a bit more time at a junction to make sure that there is definitely no one coming. You can swivel your shoulders rather than just your head to get a really good look at the road on both sides.

It's not all bad. Some of the insurers that make a point of insuring elderly drivers offer special extras to make life easier (and keep your business). Saga will enable you to carry any company car no claims discount onto a policy with them. Even better, if you decide to give up driving but there's another person named on your policy, they can take on your no claims history as their own. Another offering is to have an unnamed driver automatically covered on the insurance in case they have to take over driving in an emergency situation. Cornhill say that if you have stop driving because the DVLA stipulates that you must for age-related health reasons, they will pay you 250 in cash.

Because it is clear that elderly drivers are a growing risk on the roads, the government has stepped in with some suggestions. Nothing is set in stone yet, but there's talk of introducing compulsory health checks for elderly drivers. Some local councils, Torbay Council for example, have introduced measures of their own. In Torbay they are campaigning for families and Doctors to point out to elderly drivers who they believe to be unsafe on the roads that they should consider giving up driving. It's about asking people to take responsibility for others. As a spokesman for the Council said: "The problem is that the elderly can't always see themselves when it's really time to give up driving, so those closest to them must take responsibility for that."

A survey by The Institute of Advanced Motorists revealed that the majority of elderly drivers were all too aware that they, as a group, cause more accidents. This was resulting a lack of confidence to add to the other factors we have already discussed. Seven out of ten older drivers said that they felt they would benefit from a motorway driving refresher course, and six out of ten said that they were worried about not being able to react quickly enough at a junction, and on dark, badly lit roads. Advanced tests at the Institute have now been extended to elderly drivers, to enable them to gain confidence and improve their driving skills. It will also help take some people who really are not fit to drive off the roads.

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