“How Old is Too Old to Drive”

How Old is Too Old to Drive,” an AP article that I read in the Post-Standard earlier this week, highlights an important issue.

Driving is such an important part of our society and it has been equated with the words freedom and independence. Giving up your car keys is such a traumatic event for many older people that they don’t even want to think about it or plan for it.

State laws vary on eye exams, driving tests, and other licensing requirements but the bottom line is, for a person of any age, is what Joseph Coughlin said. “Birthdays don’t kill. Health conditions do…The only way you can assess any driver at any age is to sit in the seat next to them and watch them drive.”

Coughlin is head of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s AgeLab. They develop technologies to help older people stay active.

The article links to an online self test to help people assess their driving skills.

And AARP Driver Safety classes are offered locally in various locations. Here is the schedule.

But you should know that there is life after driving. Learning to take a bus (and it really isn’t difficult) will allow someone to retain their independence. If you or someone you know needs some help trying to figure out the public transit system in Cortland, give me a call (756-4198) and we’ll set you up with a Bus Buddy to “show you the ropes.”



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