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Older Drivers Forum Committee 1RECENT NEWS

National Award for Chair of Older Drivers Forum

It is with great pride that we announce that our Older Drivers Forum chair, Sgt Rob Heard, has after years of dedication to keeping the people of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight safe on our roads has been awarded the ACPO and Police Federation Outstanding Contribution to Roads Policing Award 2014. To read more on this click here

Winter Driving Tips

With the the weather getting colder it is always important that we make sure we are ready to drive safely in Winter conditions. See our article below on ‘Winter Driving Tips

‘Drive On’ Magazine

The Older Drivers Forum have given advice in the creation of the very first ‘Drive On’ magazine created for the mature motorist. The publishers have given us permission to post this on our web site. If you would like a hard copy of this brochure then why not e-mail the publishers at  info@firstcar.co.uk or call them on 08451 308 853
To see the brochure click here

Older Drivers Awareness week

We had over 800 mature drivers attend the awareness week in 2014 and get help and support to carry on driving safely for longer. We have now added some photographs from the 2014 events which can be seen on our Events page. To find out more on the awareness week go to our Events page  

If you want to get regular updates from the Forum then click on the ‘FOLLOW‘ button and you will automatically be sent e-mails when we add new things to the site.

Introduction into Older Drivers Forum

For an introduction in British Sign Language, please see below.

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, and the fatality rate increases significantly.

That’s where we come in. The Older Drivers Forum is about keeping mature motorists on the road safely for longer. Whether that’s helping 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 – from wing mirror adapters to an elevated driving seat – we’re here to help.

We’re a not-for-profit organisation made up of experts in road safety from across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight – from representatives from the emergency services, to charities, local authorities and businesses specialising in keeping older people on the road.

We do not perform any legal function and do not have the authority to remove driving licences. We are merely here to assist you, or the older person in your life, with staying mobile for as long as possible.

We’ll be constantly adding advice and news for older drivers to our page so please keep coming back for all the latest updates.

Why not explore the web site and see all the advice, videos, brochures, recommendations on driving assessments and much more we give to help you, or someone you know, carry on driving safely for longer.

In the meantime, got a question? Post a comment below or contact us here.

Thank you.

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Older Drivers Forum Chair gets National award

Sgt Rob Heard - Chair of Older Drivers Forum - with Hampshire Chief Constable Andy Marsh

Sgt Rob Heard – Chair of Older Drivers Forum – with Hampshire Chief Constable Andy Marsh

It is with great pride that we announce that our Older Drivers Forum chair, Sgt Rob Heard, has after years of dedication to keeping the people of Hampshire and the Isle of Wight safe on our roads has been awarded the ACPO and Police Federation Outstanding Contribution to Roads Policing Award 2014.

Rob, who has worked within the Roads Policing Unit for 22 years and is currently the force lead on road safety, was presented with the award on Thursday night (January 15) in recognition of his work creating and establishing the Older Drivers Forum.

Chief Constable Andy Marsh said: “I am very proud of the work Rob has done in helping to keep older drivers stay on the road, safely”.

At some stage, we ourselves will be older drivers, and most of us know older drivers now. This forum and its website are a fantastic resource to help inform and reassure. This award is very well deserved recognition.”

The Older Drivers Forum was set up in 2013 with the aim of keeping older drivers safely on the roads for longer, and helping relatives and carers deal with the issues that can be associated with older drivers.

The forum was Rob’s idea, and he has worked tirelessly to liaise with partner agencies including local authorities, health, Age Concern and Age UK, Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service, Forum of Mobility Centres and Institute of Advance Motorists to co-ordinate its many activities and support services.

It is basically about raising awareness of the services available to drivers aged 60 plus to help keep them driving safely for longer, and to encourage people to have regular eye-sight tests and, especially, take voluntary assessments to help build confidence and understand whether they remain fit to drive”.

The forum can also provide assessments to check, following a collision, whether a person is safe or not to continue and, where appropriate, signpost refresher training. There are currently just over four million people aged 70 and above driving on the UK’s roads, the oldest person to hold a driving licence is a man aged 106″.

Research predicts that, with people living longer, these numbers will double if not treble in the next 20 years”.

“I feel greatly honoured to have received this award. It feels a bit like winning an Oscar in the roads policing world. I would like to dedicate this award to Neil Colquhoun and his mother Patricia, who were the inspiration behind the creation of the forum”.

“Neil tragically died in a collision in 2011 when an 89-year-old man drove the wrong way for over a mile along the A30 at Old Basing. His car collided head-on with Neil’s. Neil died at the scene and our investigation found that the 89-year-old man was blind in one eye and below the legal eyesight limit in the other. However, he felt he was genuinely fit to drive. From that, we came up with the idea of the forum, and we hope by doing so we can prevent another tragedy like this. We are not about taking people off the road – we are about trying to help people keep their independence and carry on driving safely, for longer.”

In the 18 months since it was established, the forum’s website has had in excess of 20,000 hits and is used as a resource nationally. It has also run two weeks of awareness events across both counties which have been attended by more than 1000 people.

Rob is also now a national lead on older driver issues and is helping the Department for Transport and Road Safety Foundation develop national strategy in this growing area.

Drive On Magazine 2015

The Older Drivers Forum have given advice in the creation of the very first ‘Drive On’ magazine created for the mature motorist. The publishers have given us permission to post this on our web site. If you would like a hard copy of this brochure then why not e-mail the publishers at  info@firstcar.co.uk or call them on 08451 308 853

File Size  - 2Mb

File Size – 2Mb

Driving is a skill and it’s one that you’ve probably been honing for decades. But even after all this time you’re almost certainly still learning new things on a regular basis. The chances are that over the years you’ve also had to adapt your driving as your circumstances and your health have changed. As we age it’s inevitable that many of us start to feel less comfortable with driving – the roads are always getting busier and they’re constantly being redesigned, with ever more rules and regulations being reaped upon us. It would be easy to think about giving up driving, but there’s no need to – you just need to figure out how to deal with it all.

This is where Drive On can help you. This booklet is packed with information to guide you through why it’s worth doing a refresher driving course, how to renew your licence and how to do a few quick and easy basic safety checks on your car.
There’s even information on how you can cut the cost of your car insurance.

Winter Driving Tips

Winter Driving TipsWith the weather getting colder and the chance of ice and fog on the roads, here are a few tips to guide you to driving safely in the winter:

  • Get up at least 10 minutes early to give you time to prepare the car.
  • Don’t drive off like a tank-commander, with a tiny hole cleared in the windscreen.
  • Clear all windows using a scraper and de-icer.
  • Use a cigarette lighter to warm a key for a frozen lock. Don’t breathe on the lock, as the moisture will condense and freeze.
  • Plan routes to favour major roads which are more likely to have been cleared and gritted.
  • Put safety before punctuality when the bad weather closes in. Allow extra time for winter journeys but be prepared for the inevitability of being late for work due to unexpected delay.

The AA also has some good advice, click here to see their advice

Driving in the Fog

Below are some good tips for driving in fog we at the Older Drivers Forum have put together:

  • Use dipped headlights at all times along with wipers and demisters.
  • Familiarise yourself with your front and rear fog lights – know how to switch them on and off – and use them when appropriate. The Highway Code says you should put your fog lights on when visibility is seriously reduced, that is roughly when you can see no more than 100m, or length of football pitch. Do remember to turn them off when visibility improves
  • Beware of other drivers not using headlights.
  • Keep to your lane
  • Only drive as fast as conditions allow and maintain a greater distance between you and the car in front. Tailing someone’s rear lights can give a false sense of security and is dangerous
  • Be able to stop within the distance you can see clearly – this is particularly
    important on motorways and dual carriageways, as vehicles are travelling faster.
  • Don’t accelerate to get away from a vehicle that is too close behind you.
  • Check your mirrors before you slow down.
  • Allow extra time for your journey
Building confidence

If you need to build your confidence in your driving, why not book up a voluntary driving assessment from one of the courses we recommend, click here to see the courses avaialble for all needs.

Have a safe journey.