As the baby boomer generation enters old age, the graying of America may be felt dramatically on the road. In 15 years, 1 in 5 drivers will be 65 or older, reports AP. The NTSB is already trying to gauge the impact that might have—though smart cars and smart roads could make up for slower reflexes and keep people on the road longer.
Inevitably, though, boomers will live longer than their ability to drive, resulting in what experts call a "mobility gap"—a sizable population of former drivers who have outlived their ability to be independently mobile. "For many, our homes will be house arrest," says one MIT researcher on aging. But for those who continue to drive, the road could be increasingly dangerous. Fatalities from crashes start to increase around age 75, and a driver over 85 is more likely to die in a crash than a teenager.