Presentation on theme: "Presentation by Kathryn Swanson WHCOA Listening Session On behalf of the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) January 8, 2005."— Presentation transcript:
Presentation by Kathryn Swanson WHCOA Listening Session On behalf of the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) January 8, 2005
GHSA: Who Are We, and Why Do We Care About Aging? Non-profit association representing state highway safety agencies Highway Safety Act of 1966 State Highway Safety Offices (SHSOs) focus on improving roadway safety by changing driver behavior Goal: Reduce the number of fatal and serious injury crashes that happen each year
GHSA: Why Do We Care About Aging? SHSOs conduct a wide array of traffic safety programs Science-based, data-driven, problem identification Address current problems (alcohol-impaired driving, lack of seat belt use, young drivers) Focus on target populations (motorcyclists, child passenger safety) Anticipate potential/emerging problem areas (road rage, older drivers)
Older Driver “Problem” Current status: Number of older drivers in crashes is not as large as other target populations Due to their frailty, the injuries older people receive in crashes tend to be more severe Most older drivers set their own appropriate limits and curtail their driving if their skills diminish
Older Driver “Problem” Emerging issue: Older people are driving longer Number of older drivers will double over next thirty years Different drivers age differently “One size fits all” scheme (such as frequent testing after specific age) may not be appropriate How can we craft good public policy for aging drivers that balances safety and mobility?
Effective Countermeasures Roadway countermeasures Better designed, larger signs; advanced warning signs Re-engineered intersections Enhanced lighting Raised and reflective pavement markings These countermeasures are in the domain of the roadway engineers and would improve roadway safety for all road users.
Effective Countermeasures Vehicle countermeasures Better dashboard design Enhanced seat belt design More “pedestrian friendly” vehicle exteriors These countermeasures are in the domain of vehicle design (auto manufacturers and NHTSA) and would improve safety for all road users.
Effective Countermeasures Driver countermeasures Re-testing? Age limits for driving? Public information campaigns? Enforcement programs? These countermeasures are in the domain of DMVs and SHSOs, but are untested and (sometimes) viewed as discriminatory.
Local Roles with Older Drivers Meet mobility needs of all residents Examine local crash data and respond appropriately Encourage entire community to take responsibility for safe roads
State Roles with Older Drivers DMVs play lead role at state level with testing and license renewal SHSOs can play a supportive role Crash data analysis Program delivery
Federal Roles with Older Drivers Evaluate existing programs Mandatory physician reporting laws in five states (CA, DE, NJ, OR, and PA) Medical Advisory Boards (MABs) Restricted licenses Older driver training programs
Federal Roles with Older Drivers Identify and encourage best practices Look at “medical fitness to drive” broadly AMA guidelines for physicians NHTSA law enforcement cues brochure MABS Model guidelines and authorizing legislation Training for MAB members
Federal Roles with Older Drivers Develop training programs and public information materials NHTSA law enforcement cues brochures Physician training programs Model driver screening and evaluation program
Federal Roles with Older Drivers Investigate additional options Graduated de-licensing Immunity for people who report older drivers Public education materials that take stigma out of reporting family member Encourage DMVs to allow restricted licenses; evaluate effectiveness of such licenses
Federal Roles with Older Drivers Investigate additional options (continued) Vehicle adaptations for older drivers Community referral services for counseling and identification of alternative transportation Accelerate efforts to develop and test procedures for screening and assessing medical fitness to drive
Federal, State, Local Collaboration Federal government should conduct research, disseminate results to states, develop model laws and programs, identify and disseminate best practices, provide outreach to relevant national organizations Federal government should work with state DMVs to set up appropriate systems at state level. DMVs should set up systems to identify, evaluate, and provide remedial services for older drivers
Federal, State, Local Collaboration SHSOs should support DMVs with law enforcement training, strategic communications on older driver issues SHSOs should encourage their local grantees to identify the role older drivers play in the local crash scene Communities should be encouraged to form multi- disciplinary task forces to address older driver issues
What is the Role forWHCOA? Safety and mobility: doesn’t have to be an “either/or” proposition Focus on the safe transportation of older persons Focus on safe roads for all road users Make recommendations for federal, state, and local governments
For more information www.ghsa.org (state law info.) 202-789-0942 email@example.com