A Longitudinal Investigation of Falls and Motor Vehicle Crashes in Older Drivers

Academic Article


  • Objective: To assess the longitudinal association between fall history reported at a driver’s license screening visit and the likelihood of subsequent vehicle crashes. Method: A total of 1,127 older adults were recruited from Maryland State Motor Vehicle Administration sites and interviewed annually over 15 years. Results: Individuals who reported a previous fall were more likely to be female, perform worse on physical functioning and divided attention tasks, and report more situational driving avoidance compared with non-fallers at baseline. Females who reported a fall at baseline had a 2.6× greater likelihood of subsequently reporting a crash over the 15 years than males. Among those who reported a fall at baseline, greater weekly driving exposure over the 15 years was associated with a 23% higher likelihood of a subsequent crash. Discussion: These findings support the utility of investigating nontraditional driver screening methods to identify drivers who may be at increased risk of future driving difficulties.
  • Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Pope CN; Fazeli PL; Bell TR; Gaini MS; Mrug S; Vance DE; Ball KK
  • Start Page

  • 1258
  • End Page

  • 1266
  • Volume

  • 32
  • Issue

  • 9