Sheriff’s Office Staff Trains to Assist Older Drivers Through Carfit Program
Freehold: Sheriff Shaun Golden is pleased to announce the implementation of a program to the Monmouth County Sheriff’s Office. On December 12, staff from the agency along with members of the Wall Township Police Department, Marlboro Township Police Department and AAA attended a one day training event on how to become technicians in the CarFit safety program for older adults.
“As members of law enforcement, public safety is our top priority,” said Sheriff Shaun Golden. “This educational program helps enhance the safety of our seniors while they are out on the roads, since it’s an opportunity for drivers to determine how well their personal vehicles “fit” them.”
CarFit was created by the American Society on Aging and developed in collaboration with AAA (American Automobile Association), AARP and the American Occupational Therapy Association. According to those agencies, older drivers are often the safest drivers in that they are more likely to wear their seatbelts, and less likely to speed or drink and drive. However, older drivers are more likely to be killed or seriously injured when a crash does occur due to their age and fragility of their bodies.
In addition, older drivers can also improve their safety by ensuring their cars are properly adjusted for them. A proper fit in one’s car can greatly increase not only the driver’s safety but also the safety of others. At a CarFit event, a team of trained technicians and/or health professionals work with each participant to ensure they “fit” their vehicle properly for maximum comfort and safety. A CarFit check takes approximately 20 minutes to complete.
Each CarFit evaluation takes only 20 – 30 minutes, and ensures a proper “fit” based on the following criteria:
- Safety belt use
- Steering wheel tilt
- Head restraint setting
- Positioning to air bag
- Line of sight over steering wheel
- Positioning to gas pedal
- Positioning of brake pedals
- Mirror adjustment
- Neck Mobility
- Operation of parking brake
- Operation of ignition key
- Operation of other vehicle controls
CarFit can also provide valuable information to seniors that have difficulty:
- Reaching the shoulder harness and buckling/unbuckling the seat belt
- Getting into and out of their vehicle easily
- Turning their head to look over their shoulder while changing lanes
- Sitting comfortably, without knee, back, hip, neck or shoulder stiffness or pain
For information about the CarFit program, please contact Sheriff’s Officer Michelle Melendez – 732-431-6400 Ext. 1174 or AAA Traffic Safety Community Educator Frank A. Neary at 609-570-4132.
For a downloadable version of this press release, click here: News-Release-MCSO-Assists-Older-Drivers-through-CarFit-Program