Older Women Most Likely Mistake Gas Pedal For Brakes: Study

Older Women Most Likely Mistake Gas Pedal For Brakes: Study

A new study from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration finds that most car accidents that occur because a driver mistakenly hits the gas pedal instead of the brakes involve older female drivers in parking lots.

Apparently, almost two-thirds of drivers involved in this type of accident were female, and occurred more frequently with drivers over the age of 76 and under the age of 20. But guys, you aren’t off the hook – when looking at all types of crashes, 60 percent of drivers involved are male.

The study was based on an analysis of 2,400 gas pedal accidents stored in a North Carolina state crash database and 900 news reports. When examining the database accidents, researchers found that accidents were just as likely involve drivers under 20 as over 76. The news reports told another story – about 40 percent of accidents involved elderly drivers. Most of these incidents took place in parking lots, parking garages and driveways rather than on roads.

So why would someone hit the gas pedal instead of the brake? There are a few reasons, but it’s most likely that the area of the brain that is needed to drive safely isn’t as strong in teenage and elderly drivers. This area of the brain, which is responsible for planning, attention and organizing, doesn’t reach full maturity until early adulthood. For seniors, these functions start to slide as they get older.

[Source: Boston Herald]