OBJECTIVES: After driving, walking is older adults' second most preferred mode of transport and preferred recreational activity. This leads to greater exposure to traffic, increasing their risk of pedestrian-vehicle crashes, with older adults being more likely to die as a pedestrian compared to when using other modes of transport. However, less focus has been placed on this particularly vulnerable group. This review summarizes issues associated with older adult pedestrian and motorized mobility scooters (MMS) safety and interventions that have been conducted.
METHODS: A literature search was undertaken from PubMed, MUARC publications, the Curtin University Library Catalogue, and Google Scholar. Keywords included older pedestrians, older adult road injury, mobility scooter injury, and injury prevention. Publications from 2000 and later were used, unless an earlier publication had significant relevance and worth.
CONCLUSION: Maintaining older adults' mobility and independence during a time of decreasing physical and mental capacity is a priority. Walking provides a key mode of transport that needs to be given higher priority within the road environment by policy makers, transport planners, and drivers. Therefore, governments need to consider appropriate and comprehensive urban planning and road safety policies that accommodate active aging to provide pedestrians and MMS users with environments that facilitate active living and safe transport. In addition, there is a need for community programs that raise awareness about safe road crossing for this growing vulnerable age group.