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Helping CA Drivers Stay Safe On The Road

May 23, 2008

Californians hitting the road this holiday weekend may also want to think about tuning up their driving skills. One-in-seven drivers in California is age 65 or over; and by the time the last of the baby boomers turn 65, that number will be one-in-four.

Christina Clem, of AARP California, says her organization's "Driver Safety Program" is a way for older motorists to learn valuable information that could help them maintain their independence.

"Things have changed. The cars have changed; there's new technology. There are new things on the road that people aren't aware of, and that's what this class is designed to teach."

Drivers are reminded, for example, that there is no need to pump antilock brakes. Clem says even the recommended way to hold the steering wheel has changed in recent years.

"10 o'clock and 2 o'clock was the grip that you were supposed to use when you learned to drive, but now with air bags, it actually should be at 8 and 4 or possibly 9 and 3, which would help you avoid an injury in case the air bag inflates in a crash."

AARP members who bring a friend and take the class by June 15th receive special two-for-one pricing. Some insurance companies offer discounts for drivers who complete the class. More information is available online at

Lori Abbott/Don Mathisen, Public News Service - CA