Experienced Driver Assessments for Older Drivers

Our Experienced Driver Assessment is aimed at older drivers of any age, but particularly drivers over the age of 70, where age-related factors may affect driving ability. This assessment is also suitable for older drivers and other individuals wishing to have an objective assessment of their driving skills.

We provide a clear overview of the aims and content of the assessment and inform participants what will be required of them.

This assessment is carried out by an Approved Driving Instructor (ADI). Proof of a full driving licence is essential for confirmation of driving status. If own vehicle is used, the vehicle must be road worthy and proof of MOT, Road Tax and insurance must be provided. A QEF vehicle is available for an additional charge.

The initial pre-driving assessment gathers and records:

  • Reason for attending
  • Medical conditions which would affect driving ability
  • Medication and eyesight details
  • Type of vehicle driven
  • How often, how far and where driving takes place
  • Opportunity to discuss any difficulties when driving
  • General driving knowledge

Note: If for any reason the assessor believes a medical condition may affect driving ability, the driver will be advised to complete a full driving ability assessment. The driver must be clearly informed of the potential recommendation for further assessment, prior to having an Experienced Driver Assessment (EDA). The driver would need to pay for the Driving Ability Assessment. However the money paid for the EDA will be refunded, if the driver attends for a Driving Assessment.

Vision

All drivers are required to read a standard car number plate from the relevant distance according to the Road Traffic Act. If unable to do so, will be advised to have further investigations with an optician, and the assessment cannot be completed.

In-Car Assessment

A suitable QEF vehicle is available. Alternatively, the driver’s own vehicle may be used in exceptional cases, but additional driver insurance arrangements will be required. The assessor is responsible for checking the vehicle documents and reviewing the safety of the vehicle.

If the assessor is not satisfied with the safety margins of the vehicle, the assessment must stop. Drivers must be made aware of this issue prior to the assessment.

During the assessment, the assessor will be assessing the older driver for the following:

  • Observation, alertness and hazard awareness
  • Attitude and behaviour to other road users
  • Vehicle control and handling
  • Appropriate use of mirrors and signals
  • Manoeuvres including parking, reversing and emergency stop
  • Junctions including left and right turns, roundabouts, traffic lights and crossroads
  • Variable speeds from 20mph to 60mph
  • Ability to follow the rules of the road and knowledge of road signs
  • Decision making and negotiating
  • Positioning the vehicle on the road

The standardised route taken by each driver is consistent and covers all the relevant aspects to make an informed decision. The whole assessment should take no more than 1 hour 30 minutes.

Concluding Interview

The driver is informed of the assessors’ decision regarding ability to drive safely. They will be given a document stating that they have attended an older driver assessment, which includes the assessors’ outcome.

If the assessor believes the driver is having some difficulties, they will be advised to attend for a full Driving Ability Assessment at a discounted price. Exceptionally where a driver is at high risk and refuses further assessment, assessors are advised to contact the DVLA.

In the event of a driver being considered unsafe to drive home after the assessment, the Mobility Forums ethical guidelines will be followed.

Information sheets, including tips for safer driving and older driver guidelines can be given to the driver if necessary. Driving lessons can also be offered through our driving school.

No formal written report is produced; however a copy of the letter stating the assessor’s decision is filed for future reference in compliance with the Data Protection Act 1988.

Drivers have the option on the application form to give permission to use the results of their assessment for research purposes.