PARIS – Senior drivers in Northeast Texas can have a trained TxDOT specialist check their automobiles for comfort, safety, and mobility to help improve their daily driving experiences.
These audits are part of the national CarFit program developed by the American Automobile Association (AAA), American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) and the American Occupational Therapy Association. They are designed to provide a quick, comprehensive check on how an experienced driver and their vehicle work together.
“CarFit is now part of our safety program,” said Monica Freeman, TxDOT traffic safety specialist, and a certified CarFit technician. “As we age, changes in our vision, flexibility and strength, the range of motion, and even our size and height can make us less comfortable and capable behind the wheel.”
“A free CarFit check helps the driver understand and use the safety features of their vehicle. We complete a 12-point checklist with drivers. Some of the things we check are the correct position of the driver’s seat, the driver’s ability to easily reach the pedals, and how to properly adjust and set the mirrors.”
Drivers who safely fit their car are better able to deal with stressful driving conditions such as traffic congestion, long travel distances, and new technology, Freeman said. She conducts CarFit checks at the Paris District office at 1365 N. Main Street in Paris. Interested motorists can contact her at (903) 737-9292 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a CarFit check.
Senior drivers can also check their local AAA club or AARP office to take driver safety refresher courses or look into occupational therapy driving evaluation programs that provide individual driving assessments. CarFit is an extension of these classroom programs that helps mature drivers ensure their personal vehicles are adjusted to their needs.
For more information, contact Tim.McAlavy@txdot.gov or (903) 737-9213.