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What to Do if Your Parent Is Unsafe Behind the Wheel

an old man driving representing senior parents and unsafe driving

As your parent ages, cognitive decline and limited physical capabilities can make it difficult for them to drive safely. It may be time to look into transportation services as a safer way for your parents to get around.

Buckner Retirement Services offers transportation services for older adults who can no longer drive. If you are wondering whether it’s time for your parents to stop driving, read on to learn more about senior parents and unsafe driving. You can also ask about our transportation services by contacting Buckner Retirement Services at 214.227.7182.

Senior Parents and Unsafe Driving

Have you noticed your parent’s driving skills declining in recent years? When you’ve seen that your parent isn’t driving as well as they used to, you may wonder whether it’s time they give up their license and stop driving altogether.

Asking a parent about their ability to drive safely can be a very delicate situation. Many seniors feel that giving up driving is sacrificing their independence.

Before speaking to your parent about giving up driving, you should know what signs to look out for. The following are all indicators that it’s no longer safe for a senior adult to drive:

  • Stopping when there is no stop sign
  • Running red lights or stopping at green lights
  • Drifting out of lanes
  • Consistently failing to use turning signals
  • Forgetting simple or familiar directions
  • New dings, dents, or damage to the car
  • Inability to park within the lines
  • Sideswiping other vehicles when parking
  • Inability to hear beeping, honking, or other traffic sounds
  • Confusion over common traffic signs and signals

Some driving mistakes are isolated incidents, so you must look for consistent issues. When your parent exhibits these concerning driving signs numerous times, it is likely time for them to stop driving. You should be ready to approach them about giving up their license.

How to Discuss Seniors Stopping Driving

Discussing with your senior parent about giving up their license privilege can be challenging. Your senior parent may feel like they’re losing their independence by giving up driving. When the time comes, remember the following tips to help make the discussion easier.

Enlist the Help of Friends and Family

You are asking your parent to stop driving because you care, which must be clear when discussing with them. For seniors stopping driving, it helps to know that friends and family are concerned for their well-being. Ask your parent’s closest friends and other family members to be present when you discuss the topic. This will show your parent that their loved ones are speaking out of concern for their safety.

Have Transportation Options Lined Up in Advance

For most seniors giving up license privileges, their main concern is losing their independence and ability to get around. Make sure to have various transportation options lined up in advance. It helps to show your parent there will still be numerous ways to get where they need to go.

Provide Examples of Unsafe Driving

When you approach your senior parents and their unsafe driving, it’s not uncommon to experience resistance and denial from them. You must be able to explain to your parent why their driving has become unsafe and provide examples of why. These examples may include stories, photos, or even videos of times they have exhibited unsafe driving practices.

Transportation Services at Buckner Retirement Services

Finding reliable transportation is difficult for many seniors who are unable to drive. In most places in Texas, it isn’t easy to attend doctor appointments, visit friends and family, or even run everyday errands without a car.

Buckner Retirement Services understands how important it is for seniors to remain active and maintain access to their community. We offer transportation services for seniors who no longer drive. To find out more, contact Buckner Retirement Services at 214.227.7182.