Ha! NRMA completely smashes THAT argument about older drivers

Like you, we were so annoyed to hear Assistant Commissioner John Hartley’s comments that older drivers should get off the road

Like you, we were so annoyed to hear Assistant Commissioner John Hartley’s comments that older drivers should get off the road the other day. His comments outraged thousands of safe, experienced drivers who feel it’s other drivers on the road that put them at risk, not the other way around.

Now one of Australia’s most respected motoring authorities has come out in defence of older drivers, pointing out that increase in fatalities of over 70s has nothing to do with driving ability.

Wade O’Leary, Advocacy & Community Content Manager for NRMA posted this comment that debunks the theory that older drivers are putting themselves at risk.

“While a 27 per cent rise in the over-70s toll year-on-year is obviously cause for concern along with the finding that elderly drivers are involved in 18 per cent of fatal accidents, despite making up only 10 per cent of the motoring population a closer look at the data suggests that older motorists are not the most pressing safety issue on NSW roads.

“Deaths in road-related incidents for this age group jumped from 60 to 76 from 2014 to 2015, but the number of older drivers killed in crashes rose only by a single fatality.

“The bulk of the increase in over-70s deaths came instead for passengers (10 to 15, up 50 per cent) and pedestrians (13 to 24, up 85 per cent).

Three older motorcyclists died last year compared to only one in 2014, but a single over-70 cyclist fatality for 2015 is a clear improvement on the four recorded the previous year.”

The president of the NRMA, Kyle Loades, backed up the idea that the Assistant Commissioner’s comments were unhelpful, and that ability, rather than demographic, should determine driver fitness.

“The NRMA is appalled by last year’s road toll, but clearly it’s misguided to blame older drivers,” he said. “We are living longer and governments are telling us we need to work longer: it is not feasible to take the privilege of personal mobility away from a growing proportion of the population.”

Does it please you see that someone is sticking up for the older driver? How long have you been driving and can you imagine ever giving it up?


  1. Every time I get on the road u am nearly wiped out by young idiots ,,tailgaters, young people on phones, it is quite frightening

    • Yvonne Vishnich  

      I have been driving for 50 years and I have only had 2 accidents both caused by young drivers who didn’t give way to me.
      The ones who scare me most are the young ones with the radio blaring, jumping up & down to the music, playing with their phones and taking off at top speed at the lights.

  2. From what I observe, Most P Plate drivers think they are 10feet high and Bullet Proof! Wet weather makes no difference.

  3. Mr Hartley’s comments are obviously the views of the current government as he made them dressed in full uniform as a deputy commissioner of the NSW police force.

    • Mr Hartley commented on the number of seniors who were involved in motor accidents. He did not say they were the drivers, nor the cause of the accidents. At least that was what I interpreted from the statement I heard on TV. It was a foolish statement in retrospect, as no-one seemed to note his exact words.

  4. It’s about time compare drug drivers p plate drivers just have a look how many older drivers drive trucks on our roads they must be doing something right

  5. Thank you NRMA for addressing this issue once again. I’m just intrigued as to how the 70 Year old workers now obliged to stay in the workforce before a pension is granted are expected to get to their place of employment. Maybe we go back to the horse and cart days.

  6. I find it amusing when the P plater burns rubber to get around me (clearly speeding) and guess who is right behind him at the lights just up the road ?

    • If you were like my husband, you would smile and wave as you drive by while the police officer is issuing him/her with an infringement notice.

    • I like that. They roar past only to get stuck at the lights and be sitting there,like a dope. Most of them won’t look at you as you pull up beside them, lol

    • Rhonda Wells, I thought you meant a police officer but I now realise it is you behind him. My husband has had it where a young one has gone flying past him and further down the track has seen the guy pulled over by a police officer, and my husband has driven past him and smiled and waved.

  7. isabel  

    As 69 yr old very safe driver no accidents in 30yrs I was driving in wet weather in Sydney last month leaving a safe distance between my car and the vehicle in front of me when in 2 separate incidences I had to brake as a vehicle from the other lane cut across on front of me in both incidences the much younger driver was observed to be tailgating all the vehicles in front of them for the next few kilometres if there had been any sudden cause to stop the would have rammed the car in front

  8. I have come to the conclusion that Green Ps mean the road is theirs , no giving away no stopping just GO, and red means watch out here I come and dont need to stop for lights other traffic !! yes I have P plater gkids too

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