AARP Driver Safety Encourages Drivers to Tune Up Their Skills During Older Driver Safety Awareness Week

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WASHINGTON-December 2, 2013: December 2 through 6 is Older Driver Safety Awareness Week and AARP Driver Safety, the country’s first and largest older driver safety initiative, wants to help motorists refresh their knowledge on how to stay safe, independent and confident when on the road.

“It’s no longer just a catchphrase. The rules of the road are changing. And the change extends far beyond new safety rules”

“It’s no longer just a catchphrase. The rules of the road are changing. And the change extends far beyond new safety rules,” says Julie E. Lee, vice president and national director of AARP Driver Safety. “From new technologies inside vehicles to new vehicle designs, to major infrastructure changes, like wider highways and new traffic patterns, it’s critical that we remain smart when we’re behind the wheel.”

To that end, and to help drivers prepare for holiday travel, AARP Driver Safety will host a live Tweet Chat on the topic of “Driving Smart this Holiday Season” on Tuesday, December 3 from 2:00pm to 3:00pm Eastern Time. AARP Driver Safety (@AARPdsp) will lead the conversation and answer questions in real time on how to best prepare for a holiday road trip. Follow the conversation with the #ODSAWchat and #DriveSmarter hashtags.

“We all know the importance of maintaining our vehicles’ performance, but we don’t place the same emphasis on our own performance as drivers,” added Lee. “A basic refresh of our driving skills—from learning how to navigate challenging roundabouts or intersections, to learning how to stay focused behind the wheel amid increasing distractions—is critical to staying safe, as well as socially connected.”

AARP Driver Safety offers four easily accessible resources for older adults who want to brush up on driving best practices, including:

AARP Smart Driver™ Course: Provides in-classroom and online courses to licensed drivers age 50 and older in all 50 states (New Mexico requires participants be 55 or older), the District of Columbia, and U.S. territories. It is available in English and Spanish. An enhanced course curriculum will launch in 2014. AARP Driving Resource Center: The recently launched Driving Resource Center is an interactive online resource that features tools and activities, including driving simulations, state-specific rules of the road and new vehicle technologies.

CarFit: A free, in-person educational program developed by AAA, AARP, and the American Occupational Therapy Association to help older drivers make adjustments in their car to ensure it “fits” just right, for maximum safety and comfort. We Need to Talk: A free program, based on information created jointly by The Hartford and MIT AgeLab, that provides online and in-person seminars to help families have difficult conversations with family members and loved ones about when to hang up the keys and stop driving. It is available in English and Spanish.

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