Over 10% with dementia caused vehicle accidents

Jiji PressTOKYO (Jiji Press) — Over 10 percent of elderly people with dementia have had traffic accidents while driving, according to a survey by the Alzheimer’s Association Japan.

Including cases in which accidents were about to occur, nearly 30 percent of such people ran into danger, according to the survey answered by family members of dementia sufferers and caregivers.

The survey showed that 83, or 15.1 percent, of 549 elderly people with dementia have experienced traffic accidents while driving. Of them, 34 had property damage, and 29 caused collisions with other vehicles.

Two people drove in the wrong direction and one caused a fatal accident.

The survey found that 63 people, or 11.5 percent of the total, nearly caused accidents. Of them, 11 ignored traffic lights or failed to stop at rail crossings, 10 got lost and seven were about to drive in the wrong direction. The proportion of people who do not have a driver’s license now after being diagnosed with dementia stood at 41.2 percent, while 20.4 percent still have it.Speech

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