BECOME A SAFER DRIVER

BECOME A SAFER DRIVER

Auto related accidents are the most common cause of
accidental death among the 65 to 74 year old age group, and the second most
common cause among older persons in general. 
Your ability to drive may be impaired by such age-related changes as:
increased sensitivity to glare, diminished coordination, slower reaction time,
physical changes in your hearing and eyesight and other sensory impairments.

As long as your physical and visual capabilities permit, you
can continue to drive.  Just because you
have a driver’s license doesn’t always mean you are able to or should be
driving.  Here are some tips to
compensate for your limitations:

Change your driving habits

If you’re at all uneasy on the road, think about changing
how, when, and where you drive.  Try
driving fewer miles, less often, and more slowly.  Plan your trips more carefully by calling
ahead.  Drive less at night, during rush
hours, and in the winter.

Consider a refresher course

In many communities, organizations offer driver education
courses for older people.  Even if you’re
a good driver, a course can teach you defensive driving habits and ways to
protect yourself from others who are not as careful on the road.  If you take the course, ask your insurance
company for a 5% discount which some of them offer.

Wear your seatbelt

Older drivers have fewer accidents per mile driven, but they
are more likely to be injured or killed due to more fragile bones and a reduced
ability to with stand the trauma of an accident.

Check your eyesight and hearing

Physical changes in eyesight and hearing occur as we get
older and can affect our driving ability. 
Over one-third of all older persons experience hearing loss that makes
it more difficult to hear in busy traffic.

Get the big picture

Get the big picture when driving even in familiar
areas.  Watch the road ahead and check
either side of vehicles, children, animals or hazards.  Keep your head and eyes moving.  Glance frequently in the rearview mirror and
at the instrument panel.

If you
would like more information about “Become
a Safer Driver”
call the Senior LinkAge Line® at 1-800-333-2433.  The Senior LinkAge Line®: A One
Stop Shop for Minnesota Seniors is a free statewide service of the Minnesota
Board on Aging and Area Agencies on Aging.  Specialists provide one-to-one
assistance with helping older adults age well and live well.  Call
1-800-333-2433 for assistance Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 4:30pm or
chat with a specialist online during these hours at www.MinnesotaHelp.info®.

“Our Mission is to identify and promote resources which enhance, empower and enrich seniors to be healthy, safe, and engaged citzens”


 

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