'Drive Safely for Longer'

A new scheme which allows older people to check their driving skills for free, is launched in Eden and South Lakeland as part of National Road Safety Week.

Refresher scheme for 250 older drivers

As part of National Road Safety Week a scheme is being launched in Eden and South Lakeland to encourage older drivers to check their skills on the road.

The 'Drive Safely for Longer' scheme is available to all aged over 65 and will operate on a first-come, first served basis, aiming to refresh the driving skills and knowledge of the region's older drivers.

Cumbria is particularly recognised for having an ageing population and it is often older drivers who are involved in road accidents because of things like reduction in eyesight and hearing.

The scheme will help around 250 drivers, and is being seen as a pilot for a further roll-out of the initiative.

"National Road Safety Week is an excellent opportunity to highlight initiatives which encourage safer driving.

The new Drive Safely for Longer scheme is a great example of early intervention and preventative measures stopping problems occurring further down the line.

We're investing now to make sure older drivers are safe - this will help reduce the heartbreak to families which can be caused by a road traffic collision, as well as the cost to emergency and health services from responding to incidents."

– Councillor Gary Strong, Cumbria County Council

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Over 65's offered free driving check

A new scheme which allows motorists aged 65 and over to check their driving skills for free, is taking place in Eden and South Lakeland.

The 'Drive Safely for Longer' scheme is part of National Road Safety Week.

The driving check-up consists of two informal drives accompanied by a local driving instructor, with the aim of refreshing driving skills and knowledge.

The sessions are free, and because it's not an actual driving test, no pass or fail is awarded.

Cumbria Road Safety Partnership are funding the courses, which will operate on a first-come, first served basis.

The £15,000 pilot scheme will accommodate around 250 drivers and will then be evaluated to see whether a wider rollout should take place in other parts of Cumbria.