Medina, Ohio – In a unique partnership formed between government and business, the Medina, Ohio, Municipal Court and Keeping Us Safe, LLC, have developed a program that will not only help keep older drivers safe, but will also save them money. This program is a joint effort with the Medina County HANDS Foundation supported by funding through the Medina County Drug Abuse Commission.
The Court is offering the Keeping Us Safe program to drivers over the age of 60 who are cited into the Medina Municipal Court for a minor misdemeanor traffic offense that involved a crash. These include violations such as speeding, improper backing, assured clear distance, and failing to stop for a red light or stop sign.
When the court receives the traffic ticket, it will send a letter to the offender with information about the program. For drivers over 60 who are found guilty of any minor misdemeanor involving a crash, once the offender has paid the fine and court costs, and if the driver chooses to complete the program, the court will send him or her a check refunding their fine. There is no cost to the drivers or their families for attending the program.
“We are glad to be able to offer this option to drivers over 60,” said Judge Chase. “Whether a crash is caused by a moment of inattention or whether it is a sign of diminishing driving skills, the program will give these drivers a look at the changes we all face as we age. This program is designed to educate people and to save lives.”
The program, Keeping Us Safe, was developed by Matt Gurwell, a former lieutenant with the Ohio State Patrol. This nationally-recognized program is designed to help older drivers and their family deal with the issues and challenges they face related to age-related diminishing driving skills.
The one-hour presentation can best be described as a practical, entertaining and realistic approach to the issue of "Senior Drivers Vs. the Aging Process". The presentation is not meant to be another safe-driving or driver-refresher program, but rather it is designed to increase awareness concerning the onset of diminishing driving skills related to the aging process. The presentation takes a direct yet compassionate approach to the very sensitive subject of recognizing that someday it may be time to relinquish some of our treasured driving independence.
Gurwell explains “The ultimate goal is not to take away driving opportunities of older drivers, but rather to offer suggestions on how to recognize and compensate for diminishing skills so that our seniors may remain on the roadways as safe drivers.”
Gurwell explains that plans are underway to make this program available to courts across the United States. For more information contact Keeping Us Safe at 877-907-8841 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Matt Gurwell is the developer of the nationally-recognized “Beyond Driving with Dignity” program. He currently lectures throughout the United States on topics related to the aging process and its adverse affects on driving skills. As developer of this life-saving program, Matt’s mission is to provide strategies and guidance to seniors that will help them to continue driving safely until the decision is made to retire from their driving career. The “Beyond Driving with Dignity” program also provides an excellent array of services and resources for both families and professionals as they deal with this very sensitive issue. Matt retired from a very distinguished and successful 24-year career as an Assistant District Commander with the Ohio State Highway Patrol. After leaving the Patrol, Matt has participated in a tremendous amount of work in the area of older driver research, best practices, current vehicle safety technologies, and adaptive equipment. Matt's creative, innovative and common sense approach, combined with his uncanny ability to bring calm and resolve to stressful situations without ever jeopardizing the dignity of others, has contributed greatly to the success of the “Beyond Driving with Dignity” program. When asked what the ultimate motivation was for starting the program, Matt explains: "There was never one particular event. It was the result of 20-plus years of holding dying people in my arms at terrible car accidents, and delivering dozens and dozens of death notifications to families. I would much rather work with families to bring a peaceful resolve to this sensitive and uncomfortable issue now, rather than have them deal with it when a State Trooper is knocking on their front door". Matt serves as Senior Care Authority’s Program Director for the “Beyond Driving with Dignity” program. Senior Care Authority (https://www.seniorcareauthority.com) is now the nation’s exclusive provider of the “Beyond Driving with Dignity” program.
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