National Older Driver Safety Awareness Week continues this week

Campaign’s safety message is important for more than just aging divers

LANSING — If you think that “National Older Driver Safety Awareness Week” is only relevant for aging drivers, think again.

Families, friends, healthcare professionals and law enforcement also play important roles in the lives of aging drivers, especially when the time comes to transition from driving to non-driving.

Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson encouraged Michigan residents to celebrate the week by taking this opportunity to learn more about the topics related to aging and driving on the state’s Safe Driver Smart Options website at Michigan.gov/AgingDriver.

“Our aging driver website is an excellent resource for older drivers, their families and the professionals who care for them,” said Benson. “I encourage everyone to visit the Safe Drivers Smart Options website to learn more about keeping an aging family member safe, active and mobile.”

This week, residents are invited to explore a different topic each day with their family, friends, and professionals in their community:

Thursday, Dec. 10: Interventions That Can Empower Drivers

Friday, Dec. 11: Staying Engaged in the Community With or Without a Car

The website provides accessible information and resources for drivers, their families and the professionals who work with them. Visitors to the website will discover:

• Older driver self-assessment driving tools and videos

• Links to driver refresher courses and other community supports for older drivers

• Information about how medications and health problems may affect driving and lists of resources available to drivers once they stop driving

• Strategies for initiating conversations about when and how to transition to a non-driving lifestyle

• Procedures for referring an unsafe driver for a driver reexamination

• Information about the aspects of aging and how best to interact with older residents for audiences such as law enforcement, healthcare, and other professionals

“We are all aging and some day will have to make the transition away from driving,’” Benson said. “Much of the stress and worry during this process can be relieved through planning and knowing what resources are available in your community.”

Recognized for excellence by the American Association of Motor Vehicle Administrators, the Safe Drivers Smart Options website was developed through a collaboration of public and private agencies as a much-needed strategy to promote safety and mobility for Michigan’s aging adults.

For more information and resources about aging drivers, visit the Safe Drivers Smart Options website. — G.G.