1 dead, 2 injured after 85-year-old driver crashes into bench


One person was killed and two others injured after an 85-year-old driver crashed his car into a bench in Tatebayashi City, Gunma Prefecture, on Sunday.

Police said the driver, Mitsuhiro Saito, a resident of Ashikaga, Tochigi Prefecture, appears unable to recall the exact details of the accident which occurred at around 9:30 a.m. in the parking lot of a bicycle racetrack.

According to police, Saito was entering the parking lot when he lost control of his vehicle and plowed into a bench. Sadao Kubo, 66, was killed, while two people sustained injuries, Fuji TV reported. One of the injured victims, Mamoru Iino, 57, who suffered a broken collarbone and fractured rib, told reporters, “I didn’t see it coming because my back was to the car. I’m not sure how I managed to avoid a direct hit.”

Police said Saito, who was hospitalized with serious injuries, told them he remembers trying to park his vehicle, but can’t recall anything else. Police believe he may have mistakenly stepped on the accelerator instead of the brake.

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How many more of these incidents do we need?

People that age should NOT be driving, period.

After the age of 70 or so, there needs to be a yearly intensive test to determine fitness for driving. And at age 75, mandatory restriction on all driving activities, to be offset by public transportation credits.

Enough is enough.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Could have been a stroke. But, no one knows, except the medical team investigating his condition. Not to mean that at 85 he shouldn't have to undergo annual medical and driving tests. That would weed out a lot of those elderly drivers who shouldn't be on the road.

A loss of life would get him charged with vehicular manslaughter, or its equivalent, in any western country. Despite his age, that's what should happen to him.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Blindly labelling all 80 year olds+ as unable to drive is wrong, some are way more able than others.

Accidents happen in all age groups, but those are largely due to negligence and lack of skill. There's a big difference in 'blindly labeling 80 year olds as unable to drive' and focusing on tracking those abilities that are naturally lost with age in many people.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The Japan License renewal should not simply focus upon eyesight when renewing your license, but also your cognitive ability, and response times. Blindly labelling all 80 year olds+ as unable to drive is wrong, some are way more able than others.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Wake-up call to fit automatic braking to any cars driven by the over-75s.

Naturally you could say no, it should be for 70-yr olds, or 65s or 60s or over 55, or to all cars of any type for any age, but we need to start somewhere.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Wonder if they will arrest this one after he get better...

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Again!? Another selfish elderly driver who thinks they can drive. Doesn't remember? Sure. Doesn't want to admit to it more likely

7 ( +8 / -1 )

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