When Is It Time to Stop Driving?

By Toby Ehrlich
On Tuesday, November 19, The Oscar and Ella Wilf Campus for Senior Living in Somerset will sponsor a special discussion for adult children about when to speak with their parents about the right time to stop driving with Tracy Noble, spokesperson for the Automobile Association of America (AAA) Mid-Atlantic.
The discussion, which is part of The Wilf Campus for Senior Living’s Monroe Township Educational Programs, will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Jewish Family and Vocational Service, 52 Concordia Shopping Center in Monroe Township, NJ. A light dinner will also be served.
“Driving is a skill that can and should be continually improved to compensate for the physical changes as the body ages as well as staying current with up-to-date driving techniques and latest vehicle safety technologies, like lane-departure warning systems,” said Noble.
She cited a recently-published Harvard University study that proves that, thanks to medical advances, Americans are living longer and healthier lives.
“Today’s seniors are skipping the rocking chair and heading out on the road to enjoy their lives. So it’s more important than ever to assess and improve their own skills so they can keep driving safer and longer,” said Noble.
She suggested that senior citizens visit www.AAA.com/SeniorDriving, a free one-stop website for AAA members or non-members which contains state-specific driver information, quizzes, videos and Q&As, slideshows and even unique brain fitness exercises shown to cut the risk of traffic crash in half.
“Nearly 90 percent of senior drivers say it’s important to them to keep driving – and they will do what it takes to stay safe, according to a AAA survey,” explained Noble.
“Helping dispel the all-too-common myth that seniors are dangerous drivers, the survey indicates that motorists age 65 and older often ‘self-police’ their driving or avoid driving situations that put them at greater risk of a crash,” she said.
According to Noble, 80 percent of senior drivers voluntarily avoid one or more high-risk driving situations. More than half (61 percent) of these drivers avoid driving in bad weather; 50 percent avoid night driving; 42 percent avert trips in heavy traffic and 37 percent avoid unfamiliar roads.
To register for the program, please e-mail info@wilfcampus.org or call (609) 480-3474.