There are many things in life that can be avoided. However, getting older is not one of those.
The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) has named December 7 - 11, 2015 as Older Driver Safety Awareness Week.
AOTA will bring attention to a different aspect of older driver safety throughout the week. These strategies will help older drivers live life to its fullest by keeping them active, healthy and safe in their communities.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, in 2013, 44.7 million people, or 14 percent of the total U.S. resident population, were 65 and older. That same year, there were 5,671 people 65 and older killed and an estimated 222,000 injured in motor vehicle traffic crashes.
This age group made up 17 percent of all traffic fatalities and 10 percent of all people injured in traffic crashes during the year. However, there are a variety of safe travel options for people of all ages.
The Mississippi Department of Transportation (MDOT) joins with AOTA in aiming to promote understanding of the importance of mobility and transportation to ensuring older adults remain active in the community—shopping, working or volunteering—with the confidence that transportation will not be the barrier to strand them at home.
To this end, MDOT continues to provide a variety of safe travel options for people of all ages and is responsible for programs such as service delivery, technical assistance and training components. In addition, MDOT plays a leading role in coordinating statewide transportation plans while allocating and providing oversight of federal transit funds. MDOT also works alongside local, state and tribal governments to provide mass transit services.
The Rural Transportation Assistance Program (RTAP) is a federal program funded through the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) that provides a source of funding to assist in the design and implementation of training and technical assistance and other support services tailored to meet the specific needs of transit operators in areas with populations of less than 50,000. You can learn more about MDOT's Public Transit programs here.