Calendar aims to make seniors safer on the roads
THE RELEASE of a new 2017 Safer Seniors Calendar on the Central Coast is aimed at making life safer and easier on the roads.
Developed in consultation with local seniors to help raise road safety awareness, as part of the Local Government Road Safety Program, the calendar is an initiative of Central Coast Council, Cessnock City Council, MidCoast Council, Maitland City Council and Port Stephens Council.
Each month features tips and information to address local road safety issues, including new bicycle laws, tips for low risk driving, how to be a safe pedestrian, alternative transport options, registering vehicles and older driver licensing.
Council's Administrator, Ian Reynolds, said the initiative puts the spotlight on all aspects of road safety.
"While seniors are some of the most experienced drivers on our roads, they are also the most vulnerable if they are involved in an accident," said Mr Reynolds.
Statistics show that between 2011 and 2015, seniors aged 60 and above accounted for more than 2,400 of casualties on Central Coast and Hunter roads.
Local police say the figures are disturbing and they fully support the road safety calendar initiative.
"All road users, no matter what age, owe it to themselves and to everyone else on the road to follow the rules and drive to the conditions," a spokesman said.
"No matter how skilled or experienced you are, or how familiar you are with a road, it's hard to know what's around the corner or to anticipate if another road user will make a mistake.
"If you're tired, distracted, speeding or impaired by alcohol or drugs, you cannot react as quickly to unexpected changes on the road."
Recent surveys have shown that some Central Coast roads are among the most dangerous in the state, particularly with the increasing high volume of traffic.
The Christmas holiday period is a particularly worrying period for authorities as thousands of holidaymakers, unfamiliar with local conditions, flock to seaside areas.
Residents can pick up their free 2017 Safer Seniors Calendar from Central Coast Council's Customer Service Centres, Libraries, and Council's 50+ Leisure and Learning Centres and Senior Citizens Centres.
Those aged 70-74 years old:
There are no special requirements if you're between 70 and 74 years old, unless you hold a multi-combination(class MC) licence. If you hold an MC licence, you'll need to pass a practical driving test every year to keep your MC licence, once you turn 70.
Those aged 75-79 years old:
When you reach 75 years old, you'll need to have a medical review every year to keep your licence, regardless of the class of licence you hold.
Those aged 80-84 years old:
If you're between 80 and 84 years old, and hold a car(class C) or rider(class R) unrestricted licence, you don't need to take a practical driving assessment, although you do need to have a medical review every year, to keep your licence.
If you hold a heavy vehicle licence (classes LR, MR, HR or HC), you need to have a medical review and a practical driving assessment every year.
You must pass all the reviews and assessments before your birthday. If you're unable to meet this requirement, contact Roads and Maritime Services for advice.
Those aged 85 and older:
When you reach 85 years old, you'll need to have a medical review every year, to keep your licence.
You also have the choice of taking out a modified licence, or keeping your unrestricted licence. If you wish to keep your unrestricted licence, you'll need to successfully pass a practical driving assessment, every second year.
A modified licence lets you keep driving under certain circumstances. These circumstances are added to your licence as conditions, which are printed on the back of the card. You must comply with the conditions on your licence when driving.