Changes in vision, flexibility, and range of motion can make driving more stressful and reduce our control behind the wheel as we age. Arthritis and other ailments may slow us down, but that doesn’t mean we need to park the car in the garage and leave it there. By making basic adjustments to our vehicles, older drivers can improve comfort and safety on the road.
On Saturday, April 24, Maui motorists are invited to a free “CarFit” event at the MEO Building in Wailuku. This event is the first of two CarFit events on Maui. The second event will be held on Saturday, May 8, at Kalama Heights (8 a.m. to noon). Registration is required: call Kaunoa Senior Services at 270-7308.
CarFit is designed to give older drivers a quick but comprehensive check of how well they “fit” their vehicle. Trained occupational therapists and volunteers ask participants simple questions and complete a 12-point Carfit checklist. The entire process takes about 20 minutes and participants leave with a list of recommended car adjustments.
The program is offered as a free public service by AARP Hawai‘i, AAA Hawai‘i and the Occupational Therapy Association of Hawai‘i.
How effective is the CarFit program? Based on follow-up surveys of checklists completed at events in 10 American cities, more than a third (37 percent) of participants had at least one critical safety issue that was addressed. One in 10 participants was seated too close to the steering wheel, and about 20 percent did not have a proper line of sight above the steering wheel.
What kind of adjustments are part of the CarFit checklist?
Check out the complete 12-point checklist and watch 12 short CarFit videos at http://bit.ly/cgI7BK.