AARP offers driver safety class for educators July 19

Published 5:52 pm Friday, July 13, 2012

AARP is celebrating teachers and school personnel this summer by offering its four-hour driver safety class at a reduced price for retired teachers and educators.
Bill Boyd, driver safety instructor for AARP, will teach the class on Thursday, July 19 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at The Meeting Place. Call The Meeting Place at 828-894-0001 to sign up.
The AARP Driver Safety classroom course is the nation’s first and largest course designed for drivers 50 and older. Students will learn safety strategies to help maintain their confidence behind the wheel. In addition, those who take the course might qualify for discounts on their car insurance.
Safe driving is a challenge for all drivers, AARP safety instructors said. For older drivers, risks to safe driving may arise from changes in vision, hearing, reaction time and judgment/cognition. Although physical and mental abilities vary considerably among older individuals, older people as a group are more likely than younger people to experience health impairments that affect their driving skills and may make their driving unsafe. Traffic safety experts have said they are concerned there will be increasing numbers of “at-risk” drivers as the population ages.
In 2005, people age 65 and older comprised approximately 15 percent of all licensed drivers and 15 percent of all traffic fatalities. Although older Americans have the lowest crash rate per licensed driver of all driving age groups, older people injure more easily than their younger counterparts and are more likely to die when injured in a crash.
In 1979, AARP developed the Driver Safety Program. The program has helped millions of drivers age 50+ learn safety strategies and tips to help them adapt to physical and mental changes related to aging. Courses are taught nationwide both in traditional classrooms by AARP-trained volunteers, as well as through an interactive online course. A nominal fee is charged for the courses.
The course is designed to help participants:
• Understand the effects of aging on driving.
• Learn driving strategies that take into account the effects of aging.
• Identify the most common crash situations faced by older drivers.
• Reduce chances of having a crash.
• Update their knowledge of today’s roads ,traffic laws, vehicles and other road users.
• Think about how they drive and identify when driving may no longer be safe.
For more information, call William Boyd at 828-859-7605.
– article submitted by Pam Doty and William Boyd

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