Older Adult Mobility and Driving
As we age, physical changes often occur that put older individuals at higher risk for traumatic accidents on the roadways. Changes in vision, hearing, strength, and reaction times, as well as increased medications, can alter or impair driving ability. This AARP Driver Safety Course provides a review of driving skills and techniques, as well as strategies and tips to help you or your loved one adjust to normal age-related physical changes that may affect driving ability.
Drivers aged 75 and over have much higher crash rates, almost as great as drivers aged 16 to 24. Cars have changed. So have traffic rules, driving conditions, and the roads traveled every day. Some drivers aged 50 plus have never looked back since they got their first driver's license, but even the most experienced drivers benefit from brushing up on their driving skills. Our trauma center staff encourage drivers over the age of 50 to attend the AARP Driver Safety Course. Courses are offered at local libraries or an on-line course is also available.
What will I learn by taking the course?
You can expect to learn current rules of the road, defensive driving techniques, and how to operate your vehicle more safely in today's increasingly challenging driving environment. You'll learn adjustments to make to accommodate common age-related changes in vision, hearing and reaction time. Below are additional topics covered in the course:
- How to minimize the effects of dangerous blind spots
- How to maintain the proper following distance behind another car
- The safest ways to change lanes and make turns at busy intersections
- Proper use of safety belts, air bags, anti-lock brakes and new technologies in cars
- Ways to monitor your own and others' driving skills and capabilities
- The effects of medications and driving
- The importance of eliminating distractions, such as eating, smoking and cell-phone use
Educational driving safety courses may be presented at community senior centers or residential facilities. For more information or to schedule a course, contact the Injury Prevention Outreach coordinator at (573) 884-6381.
Additional Injury Prevention Outreach Programs
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