Independent Age guide “Behind the Wheel”
A new guide for older drivers, “Behind the wheel: Tips for safe and confident driving in later life”, has been published by Independent Age. It can be ordered or downloaded from https://www.independentage.org/information/advice-guides-factsheets-leaflets/behind-wheel.
The guide covers things you can do to help you feel safe and confident when driving, and what the alternatives might be if you do decide to stop driving in the future. This decision should be based only on your ability to stay safe on the roads, not on your age.
Older Drivers Awareness Week 2017
The Older Drivers Forum ran an awareness week from Tuesday 3rd October to Thursday 5th October 2017. It engaged with over 1,300 older drivers to give them help and support to carry on driving safely for longer. Planning is underway for 2018 when the week will run from Monday 1st October 2018 to Friday 4th October 2018
Further details are available at https://olderdriversforum.com/hampshire-awareness-week/
These new leaflets and posters, intended to help elderly drivers to drive safely, for longer, are free to download and display (for example, in waiting rooms), or give to drivers and their families. They provide simple tips to help drivers consider whether their driving is changing, and if so, what they can do about it.
The GMC Updates Guidelines on Reporting Unsafe Drivers
The GMC updated its guidelines to doctors on when to report unsafe drivers to the DVLA on 25 April 2017. More details are available here.
ITV Documentary About Older Driver Assessments
RoSPA are supporting a brand new ITV doc following drivers aged 90+ taking their Experienced Drivers Assessment. If you or someone you know would like to take part, please call RDF Television on 0207 013 4411 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. More details are available here.
Older Drivers Awareness Week 2017
The Older Drivers Forum runs an Older Drivers Awareness Week every year at various venues across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. The 2017 Older Drivers Awareness Week will run between Monday 2nd October and Friday 6th October. Details are available here.
Older Drivers Task Force
The Older Drivers Task Force has published “Supporting Safe Driving into Old Age”, a report based on the latest international evidence, technology and road safety schemes. It makes seven key recommendations to ensure that older drivers can stay on the road and enjoy independent lives for as long as it is safe to do so:
1. Raise the age at which drivers must renew their driving licence from 70 years to 75 years, but only if an eye sight test is made compulsory
2. Require the DVLA to get evidence of a recent eyesight test when a person renews their driving licence
3. Ask a consumer body to prepare specific advice on modern car safety features that are especially helpful for older drivers
4. Improve road design, signs and markings to aid older drivers but also bring benefits for all drivers
5. Evaluate existing driving appraisal courses and improve information provided to older drivers, their families, and medical professionals
6. Pilot new products which offer an alternative to driving for older people.
7. Pool insurer data and research into major claims involving older drivers to understand the detailed causes.
The full report and recommendations can be downloaded here.
Driving a car is an important part of personal, family and work life for millions of us, providing freedom and independence to get about as and when we need to. Driving can be enjoyable and pleasant, but it also involves a certain amount of risk, and can be stressful.
Experienced drivers are, in general, safer than those with less experience. But as we get older, our health and fitness, often including our eyesight, physical condition and reaction times, begins to decline. Age related conditions can also begin to affect our driving. Of course, this is different for each person; there isn't an age at which we automatically become unsafe to drive.
Many drivers recognise that their driving ability is changing and so change when and where they drive (this is often called 'self-regulation'). There are also several simple things we can do to help us continue to drive, safely, for as long as possible, such as taking regular driving assessments and refresher training.
However, there comes a time when each of us need to reduce our driving, or even stop altogether. Taking advice from your doctor, or another health professional, and from family or friends can be very helpful.
This website will help you to:
- Recognise whether and how your driving is changing
- Decide what you can do to cope with these changes and find help, such as medical advice, driving assessments and training and vehicle adaptations
- Find a driving assessment or refresher training for your needs
- Understand your legal obligations, such as DVLA rules and procedures
- Plan for the need to change when and where you drive, and if it becomes necessary, to retire from driving.
Use the links above for further information and advice.