Safety tips for OAP drivers in St Helens

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Senior road users gathered in the town centre for three informative events during Older Driver Awareness Week, helping them to drive safely for longer.

St Helens Council has the lead role in a Merseyside-wide initiative to address the growing problem of more drivers aged 60 and over being involved in road traffic collisions – with one in seven collisions now involving a driver over 60.

Key facts and messages were delivered to show that driving for years without incident doesn’t mean you won’t be involved in one in the future.

In fact, with 35 million cars on the road today, up from 12 million in 1970, driving is much more hazardous now than it was and requires increased concentration from drivers and pedestrians alike.

In attendance were Mayor and Mayoress of St Helens, Councillors Dave and Jeanette Banks.

The Mayor said: “These wonderfully informative events show that even experienced road users can learn a thing or two. As a senior driver myself, I appreciate the independence that driving gives and how difficult a decision it would be to give that up in later life.

“But with support from the council’s Road Safety team and partners, we can all drive safely for longer.”

At the events, senior road users signed up to the free Drive Safely for Longer awareness course.

On the course, they’ll receive helpful advice from experienced and qualified driving instructors before setting off in the driver’s own vehicle for a practical session.

It’s not a driving test so there’s no pass or fail, but the instructor will be able to give some insight into your driving style and how you negotiate roads, traffic and hazardous situations.

Event-goers were able to get advice and support on a range of driving issues including medication, sight loss and dementia, and how to utilise public transport.

Organised by St Helens Council’s Road Safety Team, the events at the World of Glass, St Mary’s Market and Church Square were designed to be open forums for road users over 60 years of age, with partner agencies including Merseyside Police, Arriva, Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service, Age UK, Medicines Management Team, Institute of Advanced Motorists, Specsavers and

Alzheimer’s Society also present.

Contact the Road Safety Team for advice and support on 01744 673237.