SEOUL, Jun. 17 (Korea Bizwire) — A program requiring drivers aged 65 or older to voluntarily return their licenses is in place in Seoul and some other local governments.
However, in rural areas, where public transportation infrastructure is poor and the elderly population is a more significant demographic, there are voices of concern.
According to a survey conducted by Korea Rural Economic Institute (KREI) in March and April of this year, of the 456 farmers surveyed, 98.5 percent had a driver’s license.
Among them, about 58 percent were middle-aged with more than 30 years of driving experience.
Almost all farmers aged 65 or older with driver’s licenses, who are categorized as elderly drivers, reported in the survey that they were not willing to take part in the voluntary program to return their driver’s license.
As for the principal reason why they wanted to keep their license, 39 percent said they had no health-related issues that affected their driving.
According to the survey, 54.5 percent, more than half of the survey participants, answered that their response to unexpected situations has not changed compared to the responses of those in their 40s and 50s.
The KREI claims that measures to manage older drivers should be more detailed as public transportation in rural areas is poor and the aging population is high.
The researchers also suggested that education programs and additional cognitive tests may be effective rather than applying uniform driving management measures by age.
M. H. Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org)