It’s up to seniors and their doctors to decide when it’s time to stop driving, not the government, Premier Dalton McGuinty said yesterday in the wake of an accident that claimed the life of a Toronto mother.
“For some folks, it’s sooner rather than later, but there does come a point in time when it is no longer safe for you to drive a car,” McGuinty said. “You have to be honest with yourself in that regard ... and so does your physician.”
McGuinty’s comments came a day after a mother was killed when she and her baby were hit while crossing a busy intersection by a car that allegedly ran a red light. The 12-week-old boy was unharmed despite being knocked out of his stroller.
The driver was an 83-year-old woman.
McGuinty said he’s willing to listen to any advice his transport minister may offer, but doesn’t believe the accident is “something that calls for actions on the part of government.”
Ontario has the “toughest regime” in Canada for elderly drivers, said Transportation Minister Jim Bradley. When drivers turn 80, they must pass a written test and attend a class with other drivers. If the driver has any demerit points, they must pass a road test, he said.
Drivers over the age of 70 who caused an accident are required to undergo a re-test. Any medical problems must also be reported to the ministry by law.