REAL LIFE

Prince Philip crash: How old is too old for elderly drivers?

The 97-year-old was driving his Land Rover.
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The Duke of Edinburgh’s car crash scare has sparked a debate about when elderly drivers should hang up their keys.

Prince Philip, 97, was lucky to escape unharmed when his Land Rover flipped onto the side in a two-vehicle accident close to the Sandringham Estate on Thursday.

The widely-reported crash has now triggered a global conversation about the dangers of elderly drivers getting behind the wheel.

Edmund King, president of the Automobile Association in the United Kingdom, said it was a timely reminder for elderly people to think about their driving.

‘Older drivers often self restrict their driving by not driving at night and only driving on familiar roads,’ Mr King said. 

‘The decision to hang up your keys is a tough one but should be based on personal advice from your GP and family rather than being based on some arbitrary age.’

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(Credit: Getty Images)

Following the Duke’s crash, royal commenters have questioned if Prince Philip is too old to drive at age 97.

‘It was a horrible thing to happen, but should he be driving?’ Royal biographer Penny Junor told Sky News.

‘I have no idea who the fault lay with – but he is 97 years old and maybe his reactions are not as fast as they once were.’

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(Credit: Getty Images)
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In the UK, there are no age restrictions for elderly drivers and the law differs across Australian states.

In NSW drivers over 85 can opt for a restricted license, in Victoria licenses for drivers over 75 are only valid for three years at a time, in Queensland and the ACT drivers over 75 need to be cleared by doctors, in SA self-assessments are required while in Tasmania and the NT those over 75 need medical clearance. 

What do you think?

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