Maybe it’s time to re-evaluate testing procedures for elderly drivers
November 1, 2007
Fall is my favourite season. There's nothing I enjoy more than walking my faithful devil dog through Southern Ontario's autumn colours. This year, they were nothing short of spectacular. Especially du...
Fall is my favourite season. There’s nothing I enjoy more than walking my faithful devil dog through Southern Ontario’s autumn colours. This year, they were nothing short of spectacular. Especially during the Thanksgiving weekend.
For the first time since I don’t know when, we decided to celebrate Turkey Day at our family cottage.
I have two sisters, both married. Together, they have four kids (one of which was recently married). Add my dad, my wife and our dog and we had the grand total of 12 people and three dogs in a three-bedroom cottage.
Some people call that “cozy.” I call it “septic overload.”
The weekend reminded me of the movie “The Big Chill.”
This was our first Thanksgiving without my mom.
She passed away last year from that terrible disease called Alzheimer’s.
We spent a good part of the time reminiscing about her and the endless summers we spent at the cottage.
(A quick side note…if you suspect someone you know has Alzheimer’s, get them to a doctor for diagnosis).
The sooner it’s identified, the better.
There are drugs available that can vastly improve the quality of life for everyone concerned.
During one of our talks, my dad mentioned that his bi-annual driving test was coming up.
He’s 84 and spends a great deal of time in his car travelling to and from his Tai-Chi classes and the nursing home where he volunteers.
You can imagine the stress he must be going through.
If he were to fail his driving test, his life would change yet again.
He’d have to sell his house since it’s not close to public transit and his way of life (which has only been re-discovered a short time ago) would take another turn.
Thankfully, he’s as sharp as a tack. In fact, I’d prefer to be in car with him driving than most of my friends who are half his age. I know he’ll pass.
In fact, he won’t be happy unless he gets a perfect score.
I’m sure the same scenario is played out every day with our older generation of A/Z drivers, who in Ontario must be tested each year after the age of 65!
My God, for most, driving has been their life and is all they know. I don’t have a problem with the practice of testing the elderly. But there should be reasonable limits.
And the rules should be the same for all drivers, whether they drive a tractor-trailer or a Lincoln Towncar. Let’s not single out A/Z licence-holders – generally the most experienced drivers on the highway.
– Rob Wilkins is the publisher of Truck News and he can be reached at 416-510-5123.
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