An evaluation of crash risk among older drivers with restricted licenses in British Columbia

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(Thesis) M.A.
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Aging is associated with declines that affect driving ability, but loss of a driver’s license has negative impacts on the well-being of older adults. In keeping with Person-Environment Fit Models, restricted licenses are sometimes used to allow continued driving under conditions that do not exceed abilities. This cohort study of older drivers used provincial insurance claims data to compare crashes caused by drivers with restricted versus unrestricted licenses. Restricted drivers were more likely to be male, older, and involved in prior at-fault crashes. Results demonstrated that restricted drivers caused more crashes before restrictions than after the restrictions were applied. Cox survival analysis also revealed that restricted drivers continued to drive crash-free for longer compared to unrestricted drivers, and their risk of causing a crash was 87% that of the unrestricted drivers. These findings have important implications for driver licensing policies, and for the health and well-being of an aging population.
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