December 5 through 9 is Older Driver Safety Awareness Week and the Wyoming Department of Health wants to help keep older drivers and their families safe.

"Motor vehicle crashes are the second leading cause of fatal injuries for those 65 years of age and over," said Dara Lawyer, WDH Injury Prevention Coordinator.

Lawyer says men are more apt to experience a fatal crash. In fact, 64 percent of Wyomingites who died in crashes between 2004-2015 were men aged 65 and older.

"Being a safe driver at any age is important," said Lawyer. "However, we know older adult drivers are more at risk for fatal car crashes due to their increase susceptibility to injury, particularly chest injuries, as well as medical complications."

"Wearing a safety belt is so important," added Lawyer. "Safety belt use reduces the risk of serious injuries and deaths by half."

Other tips for older drivers include:

  • Get an annual vision screening and always wear corrective lenses
  • Having hearing checked and keep the inside of the car quiet
  • Pay attention and adjust reaction time
  • Keep physically active and address pain or stiffness with a doctor
  • Have medications reviewed and learn how medications can impact driving
  • Improve driving skills by taking a defensive driving or driving refresher classes