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Grey Pride: A manifesto | 15

What should happen

• Launch research focusing on

how to improve road safety for

older people. This has already

been done in Northern Ireland

where there is a Commissioner

for Older People.

• Introduce fines if local

authorities or the Highways

Agency fail to maintain

unobstructed views at junctions

which are accident black spots.

• Ensure the Transport Research

Laboratory uses test dummies

reflecting people over the

age of 60 so that car designs

better protect older drivers and


• Provide adequate funding so

that pavements are maintained

to safe standards.

• Ensure transport operators give

"old age" the same prominence

as "disability" when they

determine their policies.

over 80 it has only fallen by 16 per cent. And

older people represent 14% of all pedestrian

casualties but 38% of all pedestrian fatalities.

PACTS recommends the development of

an information pack and national course for

older drivers to make them aware of how

ageing affects people's ability to drive safely.

Pavements are an even more significant

issue. Over 65s are 10 times more likely

to be admitted to A&E following falls on

footpaths than because of road accidents.

Anchor's research in 2012 found 43% of

those surveyed thought many pavements

were not safe. We support PACTS'

recommendations for better-maintained and

well-lit pavements.

Poor quality pavements and dimly-lit streets

make many older people less likely to

venture out. This increases social isolation -

another major challenge for older people.

Safety is also an issue on public transport.

Despite older people experiencing a large

number of trips and falls relative to other age

groups, PACTS found "transport operators

do not view meeting the needs of older

people as a high priority." Simple measures,

such as grab rails in train stations, would

make public transport more user-friendly.

PACTS concludes: "If an individual does

not feel safe on the walk to the station, or

waiting on the platform, then they will avoid

the whole journey."

There needs to be a joined-up approach to

these issues: investing in well-maintained

pavements, road junctions and public

transport means fewer older people will end

up in hospital. The intervention of a Minister

for Older People would bring different

agencies together to address this as a joint



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