Currently reading: Moss: driving tests for over 70s
Sir Stirling Moss calls for refresher tests for drivers over 70
Autocar
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1 min read
1 July 2010

Sir Stirling Moss has called for drivers over the age of 70 to take regular driving refresher tests.

Sir Stirling, who still races at the age of 80, told The Times "You should have a refresher test when you get to 70 or 75. It would be a good idea if [older drivers] were given an evaluation test to see how responsible they are with modern roads, signs and cars, because things are so different now."

His comments follow RAC figures revealing that 61 per cent of people polled agreed with mandatory driving tests for drivers over the age of 70 and 69 per cent backed compulsory health checks.

This is despite research showing that older drivers are only involved in four per cent of crashes that lead to injury, a figure much smaller than younger drivers.

Current rules for drivers over 70 state that they must renew their licence and declare themselves medically fit to drive.

Tom Gregory

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rodenal 1 July 2010

Re: Moss: driving tests for over 70s

I still don't agree i'm afraid - I have had several reasonably quick, 90's hatchback / coupe's mostly fwd and it is near impossible to induce lift off oversteer without being really really stupid ( i.e barreling into a corner at ridiculous speeds, the car slips slightly at the front, totally and utterly letting off the accelerator altogether, car turns too much, very quickly - if you're stupid enough to do this you're having an accident sooner or later anyway) , remember these cars dont have any asc etc to help you, just your right foot.

There's also a world of difference between getting the back out in powerful a rwd car by giving it a bootful mid corner and actually managing to get it to lift-off oversteer, it's not the same type of oversteer at all, the car acts very differently in both situations (it's called snap-off for a reason) although as before it's much easier to get control of a rwd car again than fwd.

Straight Six Man 1 July 2010

Re: Moss: driving tests for over 70s

MrTrilby wrote:
rodenal wrote:
I disagree, by all means have it as an advanced test item (i.e like it already is) but to provoke a modern (fwd) car into lift off oversteer you have to be doing something really pretty stupid - by modern i mean since about 1993.
I agree. You need to be quite special to manage to persuade an overtyred modern car to oversteer whilst also managing to override the stability control's attempts to correct it. I'll wager that vastly more deaths are down to basic errors involving poor observation or anticipation - like pulling out of T junctions without thinking, or tanking along at speed and not anticipating another road user moving out into your path.

As I said, SC isn't standard on all new cars even today, and can fail, so you should be prepared to act to save your neck when the safety nanny isn't there. Of course, with it on, and with big tyres giving lots of grip, it's not easy to provoke oversteer at all, and oversteer only counts for a tiny proportion of deaths overall... but surely educating people to the max is worth it even if it only saves one life?

Straight Six Man 1 July 2010

Re: Moss: driving tests for over 70s

rodenal wrote:

I disagree, by all means have it as an advanced test item (i.e like it already is) but to provoke a modern (fwd) car into lift off oversteer you have to be doing something really pretty stupid - by modern i mean since about 1993.

It's also very very hard to catch if you arent ready for it - and lets face it if you're doing something silly enough to get into that situation and not be expecting it to happen the whole episode is only going one way regardless of training. I also think it would encourage the brainless idiots to try and 'slide' their 1.2 clio round the next bend, probably straight into me coming the other way (I'm nearly 27 now, the age all the glorious die).

Rwd much harder to lose in a lift off manner mid-corner imo, and much easier to deal with too unless again you're doing something really stupid, by which point there is little hope of recovery.

I've seen modern, post-1993 FWD cars lose the rear due to lifting off and spin. It isn't that difficult. Particularly as stability control isn't standard on all new cars even today - and electronics can and do fail, so you should always have the ability to cope without them. It's not THAT hard to catch a slide, you just need to know what you're doing. It's not about encouraging young chavs in Corsas and Clios and whatnot to try to 'drift' their stupid little hatchbacks, God knows they do it far too much already, you'll never stop them, but it's about educating responsible drivers.

I admit, though, RWD generally gives more benign handling on the limit. Catching a slide in a BMW is pretty damn easy.

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