Help­ing el­derly stay in­de­pen­dent

Glamorgan Gazette - - Your Views - Lucy Harmer Di­rec­tor of Ser­vices, In­de­pen­dent Age

A RE­CENT survey by In­de­pen­dent Age, the older peo­ple’s char­ity, re­vealed that 47% of driv­ers aged 70 and over in Wales say they would feel like they’d lost part of their iden­tity if they were not able to drive, and for 91% of older driv­ers it would mean a loss of in­de­pen­dence.

The survey was com­mis­sioned to pro­mote our free ad­vice guide, Be­hind the Wheel: Tips for safe and con­fi­dent driv­ing in later life. The guide has tips to help older driv­ers, and pro­vides in­for­ma­tion on al­ter­na­tives if they de­cide to stop driv­ing. It is ac­com­pa­nied by on­line in­for­ma­tion for the fam­i­lies of older driv­ers around how to start dif­fi­cult con­ver­sa­tions about driv­ing.

There are al­most five mil­lion peo­ple over the age of 70 who hold li­cences in the UK, with more than 100,000 of those over the age of 90. There are many ben­e­fits to con­tin­u­ing to drive into older age and, as long as they re­main safe, older peo­ple should be able to con­tinue driv­ing for as long as they want to. It’s also vi­tal that peo­ple no longer able to drive have ac­cess to in­for­ma­tion on the op­tions for get­ting around with­out a car.

Be­hind the Wheel is free to down­load from www.in­de­pen­den­t­age.org/driv­ing-guide or can be or­dered by call­ing 0800 319 6789.

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