Hampshire and the Isle of Wight Older Drivers Forum is providing support and advice to older drivers as part of Older Drivers’ Awareness Week which starts today (28 Sept).
The Forum team is visiting different venues across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight to offer advice including how to book a driving assessment and the importance of arranging regular eyesight tests.
The team will also discuss how health issues can affect driving and the consequences of not being fit to drive, and highlight alternatives to driving and staying independent without a car.
Last year the Forum engaged with more than 800 mature drivers during the awareness week, which once agian this year is supported by Boots Opticians who are providing free eyesight tests and answering questions about eyesight issues.
There are currently more than 4.3 million drivers in the UK aged 70 years and over and Hampshire Police says this number will double, if not treble, in the next 20 years. The oldest person who holds a driving licence is a man aged 107 years.
The Hampshire Police website says: “We know that older motorists have a wealth of experience, confidence and tolerance. However, sight, hearing, reaction time and judgement of speed and distance may not be as sharp as it once was.
“Fragility increases with age, so injuries tend to be more serious and recovery takes much longer. Casualty rates do increase for car drivers aged over about 65 years, and the fatality rate increases significantly.
“The Older Drivers Forum is about keeping mature motorists on the road safely for longer. Whether that’s giving you practical and informative help and support to continue driving or pointing you in the right direction for an assessment to identify your driving needs.”