EDMOND — Rush-hour traffic can challenge the most skilled drivers, but for older Oklahomans, even the road less traveled can present special obstacles.
Those challenges will be addressed Jan. 8 in an AARP Defensive Driving class at Touchmark at Coffee Creek in Edmond.
The 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. class will qualify participants for insurance discount programs. The cost is $15 for AARP members and $20 for nonmembers. The class is limited to 35 people. Touchmark is at 2801 Shortgrass Road.
“The Defensive Driving class is a very proactive way for older drivers to actively engage in becoming safer at the craft of driving,” said Myra Smith, health services director for Touchmark at Coffee Creek. “Many people tend to drive less as they age. This can mean they aren't as familiar with road changes or other travel hazards.”
For example, vision is a challenge for many older drivers, said Smith, who worked as an emergency room nurse before her position with Touchmark at Coffee Creek. She recalls times when older drivers were brought to the emergency room after an auto accident that began with an attempt to change lanes.
“It can happen so quickly. People think they have checked their blind spot, but there can be a car there,” Smith said. “As they start to pull over, the other driver honks, and this startles people. They intend to step on the brake and instead step on the gas and run into the car in front.