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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    22

    Default Can an Elderly Driver be Required to Take a Driving Test After a Traffic Ticket

    My question involves a traffic ticket from the state of: WI

    My 84 year old mother told me a police officer pulled her over a few days ago. She had no idea why, but she said the officer told her she was going about 5 mph below the speed limit in the left-hand lane and was swerving somewhat into the other lane. The officer came to the window and my mom already never knows which buttons to push to open the window (she usually hits the open or close on the locks button or pulls up the window button when she should push it) and was so flustered from being stopped that the officer had her open the door so he could get the window down for her. I'd probably be just as flustered and wouldn't be able to do something as simple as that either without looking impaired somehow. The officer asked her if she was confused, and how old she was, where she was going, whether she had alcohol in the car. Well no alcohol because she doesn't drink and she was just going about 3 miles up the road to the grocery store. She will drive slow in the left hand lane because she doesn't like changing lanes and the store was on the left hand side.The officer gave her a written warning but also told her she'd be getting a letter in the mail within about a month. Now she is so worried that this letter is going to say they are going to take away her license or that she needs to take a driving test.

    I'm sure this will be a letter saying she needs to be tested, whether it's verbally, written or actually driving, I don't know. If she does have to do a driving test with someone in the car I can almost guarantee you due to her nerves she will be a total failure. Would they totally revoke her license based on her driving or is it possible that they would just restrict her? I mean already she doesn't drive at night or in bad weather, she doesn't drive during rush hour, only drives the roads she knows and she only drives pretty much within a 5 mile radius of her home to the grocery store, church, pharmacy and library. She was only stopped by a cop once before in her life and that was for going 10 miles over the speed limit on a rural road 20 years ago. She's never had any kind of accident. This time it was just a bit of swerving out of her lane, but I'm sure the officer seeing her all flustered and not able to open her window didn't help.

    She lives alone and there is no family nearby so driving to get places is very important to her. She does not want to have to depend on some service to take her everywhere. Do you think they would take away her license based on what I've said above? If they did, could she fight it and simply get it restricted?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    15,730

    Default Re: Ticket

    If they test her and she fails, they WILL take her license away. There is no form of restriction available in that case.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    22

    Default Re: Ticket

    Could it also be a letter just requesting her to go and see a doctor if they feel that maybe she was confused? If she has no other traffic infractions on her record (seeing as how her speeding ticket from 20 years ago is long gone from her records) and she didn't cause an accident I can't see them totally taking away her license. I mean I'm 45 and if I was asked to retest my driving ability I'd probably fail as well due to nerves!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Tacoma, WA
    Posts
    1,533

    Default Re: Ticket

    Well, nobody here has a crystal ball that can predict what the letter will say or if there will even be a letter sent. But, if the state licensing agency requires her to submit to a test, she will have to do so or surrender her license.

    Quote Quoting Mapper
    View Post
    I mean I'm 45 and if I was asked to retest my driving ability I'd probably fail as well due to nerves!
    Seriously? If that is truly the case, how can you be trusted not to “fail” when something unexpected occurs while you are propelling a 2 ton glass and steel guided missile down the same roadway that your neighbor’s family drives? If your “nerves” are so fragile that you would freeze up on a simple driving skills test, I don’t trust that you are safe to drive now. Just sayin’
    Behind the badge is a person. Behind the person is an ego. This is as it should be, person at the center and ego to the back.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    6,501

    Default Re: Ticket

    If you want to know what may happen and how an evaluation is done then you should contact Wisconsin ​​Medical Review & Fitness Unit of the DMV.

    http://wisconsindot.gov/Pages/dmv/li...forcement.aspx

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    22

    Default Re: Ticket

    Quote Quoting budwad
    View Post
    If you want to know what may happen and how an evaluation is done then you should contact Wisconsin ​​Medical Review & Fitness Unit of the DMV.

    http://wisconsindot.gov/Pages/dmv/li...forcement.aspx
    Thank you.

    Quote Quoting PTPD22
    View Post
    Well, nobody here has a crystal ball that can predict what the letter will say or if there will even be a letter sent. But, if the state licensing agency requires her to submit to a test, she will have to do so or surrender her license.

    Seriously? If that is truly the case, how can you be trusted not to “fail” when something unexpected occurs while you are propelling a 2 ton glass and steel guided missile down the same roadway that your neighbor’s family drives? If your “nerves” are so fragile that you would freeze up on a simple driving skills test, I don’t trust that you are safe to drive now. Just sayin’
    Yes seriously! I can drive perfectly fine when I am on my own.I'm perfectly content driving in an unknown area and if I take a wrong turn I don't have to hear about it from anyone. But you put someone else in the car who is going to critique every move I make then yes I will get frazzled over the smallest things like "Did I signal too late?" "Should I have hit he brakes 100 feet prior to when I did and ride them rather than just pump them closer to the stop sign" etc. I can barely drive with my husband in the car because we get a mile down the road and it's "You're going too slow" "You need to pass this person" "You need to be in another lane" "You're going over the line". My god, I don't have a calm nerve! Yet in 30 years of driving, I've never had an accident, never even been stopped by a cop whereas he's had a couple of DUI's and several speeding tickets and he's critiquing MY driving!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Posts
    1,142

    Default Re: Ticket

    The fact is that eventually elderly people need to stop driving. I know your mother "doesn't want" to have to give up driving herself to the grocery or to the doctor or to church, but think of it this way. I have an uncle who was driving quite competently I believe up till he passed away last week at the age of 97. But I have seen people struggling to stop their father or mother from driving, actually having to go in and hide the keys or take the car away. I've seen parents so angry with their children that they've written them out of the will over this issue.

    But your mother may have just been providentially saved from a future situation in which she would not only kill herself, but might even kill other people. A close friend of mine was killed by an elderly woman who got the gas and brake pedals confused in a stressful street moment (of which there are going to be a few, no matter how carefully you drive.)

    Perhaps she'll be required to retest. Perhaps she'll become stressed and fail this test. Perhaps she won't, will rise to the occasion and pass it. (Which way it goes will certainly determine whether or not I'd like to be on the same road with her!) But I think you have to be a little more Pollyanna-ish about this, either way. You have not had to wrest the keys from her unwilling hands, it has been done for you by the state. Either they have determined she is no longer safe to drive, or they have waked her up and convinced her she IS able to continue driving, but perhaps with a bit more diligence.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    17,274

    Default Re: Ticket

    Quote Quoting Mapper
    View Post
    in 30 years of driving, I've never had an accident, never even been stopped by a cop
    And when you are 84 (give or take) and you exhibit poor driving skills while driving down the road on your own, then you will be subject to the same process as your mother and could very well lose your license, too.

    By the way, what would you say to all this if your mother swerved in front of a semi and her car became a tangled mass of steel, glass, flesh, and blood? Tragedies like that happen when the driving skills of the elderly erode due to age.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    22

    Default Re: Ticket

    Quote Quoting adjusterjack
    View Post
    By the way, what would you say to all this if your mother swerved in front of a semi and her car became a tangled mass of steel, glass, flesh, and blood? Tragedies like that happen when the driving skills of the elderly erode due to age.
    Well I guess I'd say "It's time to plan Mom's funeral". Sorry to joke, but if that's what happened, that's what happened. Anyways, she wouldn't have swerved in front of a semi because she creeps along and stays far away from large trucks on the road, literally slowing down to let them get far ahead of her. She doesn't drive on the highway and literally goes no further than 5 miles from her house. I would think they would at least say she could drive within 10 miles of home or something and not totally take away her license.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    835

    Default Re: Ticket

    Okay, so spin it around. What if your mom hit a pedestrian, or a someone riding their bike on the road? Perhaps a child? Are you okay with that? It wouldn't necessarily be your Mom's funeral that you would be planning, but someone else could be planning one.

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