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79-year-old truck driver, going wrong way, killed in expressway crash

37 Comments

A 79-year-old man was killed when the light truck he was driving the wrong way along a Fukui Prefecture expressway crashed into a truck and a car on Thursday night.

According to police, the accident occurred at around 6 p.m. on the Maizuru-Wakasa Expressway at Oi-cho, about 300 meters from the Oi-Takahama Interchange, Fuji TV reported.

The truck driver, who was killed in the accident, was identified as Tetsuo Tanaka, a local farmer. Police said Tanaka was driving the wrong way along the expressway and first crashed into a larger truck, then hit a car coming behind that truck. Tanaka was taken to hospital where he was confirmed dead an hour later.

Police said that according to Tanaka’s family, he did not suffer from dementia.

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37 Comments
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A light truck is like a KeiJIdosha. That is not a truck.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Another old person involved in a deadly accident.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

A light truck is like a KeiJIdosha. That is not a truck.

It's called a kei-tora, or Kei-Truck, because it is not used for carrying passengers.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Do they have similar accidents by old folks in America?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Do they have similar accidents by old folks in America?

Not as many, Americans die younger of heart disease and such due to eating too much.

-2 ( +7 / -9 )

At least he didn't take anyone else with him.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Individuals beyond certain old age should not be allowed to drive.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

In Florida, which has a large elderly population, a person is able to renew their driver license online. The only restrictions for elderly drivers is that after 80 years of age their license is only renewed for six years and not for eight. Seems the Japanese system is tougher than that already.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Suicide?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Individuals beyond certain old age should not be allowed to drive.

And what age would that be?

2 ( +5 / -3 )

wtfjapan: FYI. In Japan once you reach 70 years of age you have to be tested at a driving school every 3 years in order to renew your license. This includes reaction tests as well as a driver's test.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Actually in Australia we do have incidents where vehicles crash going the wrong way along a freeway or dual carriageway at speed, but all sorts of people are to blame, not just old people. They more often occur on country roads and involve drivers of smaller vehicles becoming fatigued, or young drivers drunk or off their faces on drugs, sometimes killing or injuring their car load of friends and people in the vehicle collided with. Heavy vehicle caused accidents are rare these days because, as has been mentioned above, there are now strict regulations and often fitted recording devices measuring distances travelled and stops.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Wtfjapan. I've never heard of compulsory driving tests for drivers over a certain age in Australia ... besides those getting a licence for the first time. If there tests now for elderly drivers then I think it's a good thing.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

In Japan once you reach 70 years of age you have to be tested at a driving school every 3 years in order to renew your license. This includes reaction tests as well as a driver's test. well its clearly not enough as elderly continue to kill people and themselves, age needs to be dropped and testing done more frequently.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Yep. That'll do it to ya.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'd really like to know how did the driver miss the No Entry sign, which has been used worldwide for many decades? Might want to check for the possibility of alcohol or prescription drug use.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

WTF

actually in countries like Austarlia / NZ they have complusory medical and driving tests over a certain age,

In NZ they require a medical certificate. There is no practical test involved. WTF must mean Without Truthful Facts. FYI the percentage of elderly drivers in Japan is higher than in the US! This is because Japanese live longer, (lifestyle choices) thus more elderly drivers and more elderly having accidents as a percentage of total drivers. You thought process is amusing but to claim

Japan trails the modern world once again in this area.

Per kilometer driven Japan has less fatal accidents than any of the countries you listed. Another WTF moment. Devoid of actual fact but high on bias.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

randomnator you said - Japan has less fatal accidents than any of the countries you listed.

Actually that's not true as Japan's rate of fatalities per 1 billion kms is higher than US, Aust or NZ.

And in many parts of Japan (esp where I live) the ratio of elderly accidents / fatalities far exceeds their percentage of the total population ( my pref. 25-30% have 50% of fatalities - about)Please check thoroughly.

WTF - as rando said, the same in Australia - only a medical certificate is required and no actual driving test - simulated or real is done - well not with the state that I'm familiar with.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I am 75 and had the "old age" test last year. I thought it was a pretty thorough test, both practical and mental. I saw some old people at the testing center who appeared both mentally and physically frail.

The problem is, I suspect, the testers are reluctant to fail people, even when they do poorly on the tests.

This is similar to the mentality you find in the schools, i.e. pass all students onto the next grade every year, even those who deserve to fail. This is benevolence to an extreme, which, in the case of driving can result in the death of others..

8 ( +8 / -0 )

The problem is, I suspect, the testers are reluctant to fail people, even when they do poorly on the tests. This is similar to the mentality you find in the schools, i.e. pass all students onto the next grade every year, even those who deserve to fail. This is benevolence to an extreme, which, in the case of driving can result in the death of others..>

Yep, that's the one...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Another old person involved in a deadly accident.

Plenty of young people are involved in deadly accidents too.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Do they have similar accidents by old folks in America?

Yes, the Santa Monica Farmers Market crash first comes to mind where the 80 something driver killed 10 people. There are a lot of accidents like this in the U.S. and I have seen a senior driving the opposite direction once or twice.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Per kilometer driven Japan has less fatal accidents than any of the countries you listed. and where did you get your stats from? a popcorn packet!? Road fatalities per capita / per year Japan doesnt even rank in the top 15 countries. This is even with Japan having a high percentage of "paper driver". And its likely to get worse as the population ages. yes and these stats are according to WHO .

3 ( +3 / -0 )

How many more lives will have to be lost before some incompetent politicians understand that enough is enough and forbid old people to drive??

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

**

Do they have similar accidents by old folks in America?**

I live near Palm Springs (Palm Desert, the shopping destination) and I am terrified every day. The elderly swarm this place during the winter/spring, driving 24KPH under the speed limit in all 3 lanes. They pull out from parking lots right in front of me (I am going 95KPH, legally) nearly causing an accident. Not looking when they suddenly swerve into my lane, when I am right next to them. Use the left lane to travel for an extended amount of time, then suddenly swerve into the far right lane to make a turn at an intersection. Use the turning lane to pass in an intersection. Not looking to see if other cars have a stop sign or not. Not looking for pedestrians using crosswalks. Pedestrians are being hit, 2 per week. Motorcyclists are dying from being rammed. The city received a special grant to stop this, since pedestrian deaths are higher than national average. But, alas, nothing will be done because they are using the grant for "teaching drivers" aka pocket money.

This is almost as bad as Bloody (Hwy) 98 in NW Florida.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"In every motorized country around the world, teenage drivers are disproportionately involved in crashes," said Dr. Anne McCartt, senior vice president for research at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. And studies of the data reveal that teenage drivers — especially male teenage drivers — are the most dangerous drivers on the road.

FYI The safest drivers are in the age group over 64 years old.

Japan is quite strict in licensing drivers compared to the U.S., at least Florida the state I'm most familiar. Not easy to suggest anyone over, or under, a certain age shouldn't be licensed. Perhaps safer roads and self-driving cars in the future is the answer.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

How many more lives will have to be lost before some incompetent politicians understand that enough is enough and forbid old people to drive??

So , young drivers never cause accidents?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@ JBird, the safest drivers, according to the owner of a driving school with whom I've had several conversations, are the deaf and hard-of-hearing. The 'over 64-year old drivers you claim to be the safest are more often not involved directly in accidents, but cause them because of their overly cautious and slow reactions while behind the wheel.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Do they have similar accidents by old folks in America?

Yes.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

WTF

Road fatalities per capita / per year Japan doesnt even rank in the top 15 countries.

and it's (17th) still lower than Aus(24), NZ(27) and the US (near 50th) per capita and by number of vehicles owned. You still assert that "Japan trails the modern world once again in this area"? I guess Australia NZ and the US aren't part of the modern world then.

Considering the roading involved, if you were to compare urban fatalities per KM, Japan is way safer than the same countries, Per billion kilometers driven, yes geography will dictate that Japan has higher numbers. look at the number of intersections per 100 kms.

Jbird Perhaps safer roads and self-driving cars in the future is the answer. it is, but it will be a couple of generations away. 3 million people in the US have jobs driving, do you think they will quietly hand over the keys?

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Latest article about aged driving says he was 76. I wonder which is correct.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

but it will be a couple of generations away. 3 million people in the US have jobs driving, do you think they will quietly hand over the keys? in the case of taxis, they wont have to hand over the keys the consumer will decide which they prefer, to be driven around by a human driver at a premium price but a higher risk rate, or to be driven by a computer that will have a lower accident rate, lower insurance premiums and lower cost per trip. In the case of delivery drivers , many of their jobs will be delivered by drones, only the larger heavier parcels will be delivered by human drivers. It certainly isnt a couple generations away with 20yrs it'll be common to see self-driving cares on our roads. Oh and itll have the added bonus of keeping elderly drivers from getting behind the wheel.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@Trevor: Actually I'm not claiming anything, I was simply quoting a statement from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. The formatting makes it look like I'm saying that the safest drivers are those over 64 drivers but that should also be part of the quoted text. Of course this is the U.S. but I imagine that most countries are the same.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

randonmator - you're the one who brought up Japan is safer than the other countries mentioned per km driven. Just accept you made a mistake and don't try to guess at excuses - that's all. And yes - geography will determine many things - for example, most of Australias fatalities are countryside. Long straight roads feature prominently.

But we're talking fatalities / km which is a far more reasonable stat than population.

The elderly in Japan make up 25% of the population and cover much, much fewer kms than younger drivers - ie they are on the road much less, yet proportionately they are way over represented in cases of accidents and or fatalities.

It's not an opinion - it's just simply the facts.

In Australia the country I'm more familiar with, it's younger drivers who are overly represented and govts., police, safety authorities, road services etc have worked hard over past decades to reduce that toll. License loss and severe penalties ( fines and sentencing) have had an impact.

It's about time the relevant authorities here showed some sense and gumption and penalized infringements more heavily and took away licenses. The police came down really heavy on drink driving a few years back and the death toll caused by DUI has decreased dramatically. A similarly strong program of enforcement is needed for all drivers (esp. elderly as they are killing and being killed in higher numbers).

But the "Softly Softly" approach reigns supreme as it seems it's too difficult in this hierarchial society to tell old people what to do. This weeks current road safety campaign in my city focussed on school students giving tissue packs and "drive carefully" leaflets to elderly drivers.

Right - that's gonna work isn't it???

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Personally, I am still puzzled how one can enter the wrong way on an expressway at 6pm without noticing something is wrong....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Anything is better than driverless cars. Over 65, sit a test every year.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Anything is better than driverless cars. Over 65, sit a test every year. actually within 10~15yrs driverless cars will outperform almost every human driver, there will come a day when people will say , "anything is better than a human driver"

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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