Classes help drivers avoid accidents, save on insuranceDriving an automobile without periodically refreshing your driving skills may be hazardous to your health.
Driving an automobile without periodically refreshing your driving skills may be hazardous to your health.
Most people know that physical changes occurring with age may affect the ability to drive safely. However, these changes are so gradual that many don’t realize that they may need to adapt the way they drive.
One of the most important steps people can take to improve their driving ability is to be aware of the changes they face and then learn to adapt to them.
That’s where driver refresher classes, such as the AARP Driver Safety Program, can help.
“It’s an excellent nationwide program that highlights the most important information to help maintain a driver’s safety behind the wheel,” said Dick Telander of Alexandria, an AARP driver safety program district coordinator and instructor. “The classroom refresher is open to anyone older than 50. Upon completion, Minnesota participants older than 55 are eligible for a mandatory discount on their automobile insurance.”
The eight-hour course, which includes a workbook, video presentations and active group discussions led by trained volunteers, will answer such questions as:
•?How does the aging process affect my driving?
•?What is the recommended way to keep a safe following distance?
•?Which drugs and medications could cause problems for me behind the wheel?
•?When am I expected to yield the right-of-way?
•?How can I drive more safely on today’s congested highways?
•?How can I avoid a confrontation with an aggressive driver?
•?What are the danger spots in a parking lot?
•?What is the safest way to make a left turn at an intersection?
After completing the course, participants will develop a greater appreciation of driving challenges and how to avoid potential collisions and injuries to themselves and others.
“The classes are very popular,” noted Telander. “The cost is minimal and no driving exam or other tests are involved.”
AARP membership is not required to take the course.
The course is sponsored by Alexandria Senior Community Center, (320) 762-2087, and Osakis Public Schools (320) 859-2191 in Douglas County and by Pope County Public Health and Human Services in Glenwood, (320) 634-0159.
The course is offered many times each month so call for dates and times. For other course locations, call AARP’s toll-free number at 1-800-227-7669.
AARP is a non-profit organization for people 50 and older. It provides information and resources; advocates on legislative, consumer and legal issues; assists members to serve their communities; and offers a wide array of benefits, products and services to members.
Program organizers are looking for another instructor in the Alexandria area. Those interested in giving back to their community and have a rewarding experience should consider becoming an instructor, Telander said. Call Telander at (320) 763-7458.