"CARFIT FOR THE OLDER DRIVER" PROGRAM
American Automobile Association (AAA.)
American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA)
Across the USA.
"Driver safety programs improve adult driver safety by addressing cognitive abilities and skills, however, older drivers can also improve their safety by ensuring their cars are properly adjusted for them. A proper fit in one's car can greatly increase not only the driver's safety but also the safety of others."
At a CarFit event a team of trained CarFit technicians and health professionals work with each senior driver to make sure that they fit their car properly.
The goal is to ensure not only elderly driver safety but comfort as well.
- Participation in the AAA, AARP CarFit event is voluntary
- Seniors can participate in CarFit confidentially
- CarFit staff will not make any changes to an older person’s car however may recommend adjustments to help seniors “fit” into their car better
- The CarFit event takes about 30 minutes
CarFit Technician Volunteers are trained to help seniors assess their current car for the proper fit and help senior drivers with check-in, car check-up and check-out at events.
CarFit Technicians can help improve elderly driver safety by recommending how to:
-Properly adjust rear view mirrors which can minimize blind spots for senior drivers
-Adjust the car for proper foot positioning on the gas and brake pedals to prevent over-reaching, fatigue and slower reaction time
-Adjust the steering wheel – if the steering wheel is to close or far from the driver it can pose a safety risk
Extenders can help senior drivers reach the pedals easier and hand controls allow seniors to continue to drive even if your feet can no longer control the pedals. If adaptive equipment is required by senior drivers such as pedal extenders and other car modifications, drivers are referred to driving rehabilitation specialists who are trained in driver assessments and equipment that fits the individual and their car. The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) has a list of driving rehabilitation specialists that senior drivers may refer to.
The “CarFit” Program also provides information and materials that promote elderly driver safety and increase senior mobility in the community.
CarFit Event Coordinators are also trained to help senior drivers by organizing and bringing CarFit to a community.