The Oakhurst office of the California Highway Patrol (CHP) is trying to create better drivers at any age.
The agency will hold two free driving courses in the upcoming months, including one for seniors on November 20 and one for teens on December 3.
The classes are part of the California Highway Patrol’s “Age Well, Drive Smart” and “Start Smart” programs, intended to help educate motorists on common driving issues and tips for their respective age groups.
The teen session, “Start Smart”, will also welcome parents and guardians and will focus on safe driving awareness. The course will include an interactive safe driving course, which will highlight how poor decisions behind the wheel can have a dangerous effect on many lives.
The class is intended to help curb teenager-related traffic collisions, which take more lives of teens annually than cancer, homicide, and suicide combined.
In 2013 alone, more than 19,000 of California’s 864,974 licensed drivers aged 15-19 were involved in fatal or injury-causing crashes, according to numbers provided by the CA Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). In 66 percent of those cases, the teenage driver was responsible for the collision, the statistics show.
The “Age Well, Drive Smart” course for senior drivers is designed to address mental and physical changes that happen later in life, and how they could potentially affect driving ability.
According to information provided by the CHP, people will often change their driving habits as they age, such as limiting where, when, or how often they will drive. The course will also discuss these changes, the CHP said.
Both classes will take place at the Oakhurst CHP Office, located at 40500 Redbud Drive.
Both courses have limited seating, and reservations are required. For more information or to make a reservation, contact CHP Public Information and Training Officer Kaci Lutz at (559) 658-6611.