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From: Sally Van Dyk
Received: May 13
Having read the letter from Fred Allman, I feel compelled to say a few words. I, too, have driven a number of years and I know myself well enough to know that, under the same circumstances in which Mr. Allman was placed, I would not welcome being sent to driving school.
I also know, however, that the primary reason for such a measure is to keep the driver, the driving public, pedestrians and property safe. For that reason I would go to driving school and have authorities deem my driving either safe or unsafe.
I have watched many elderly drivers and feared for their lives and those of all on the roads. Most drivers feel they are driving safely when, in fact, that might be far from the truth.
I know personally of a few drivers who are driving while suffering from dementia and some with Alzheimer’s disease. My mother had Alzheimer’s and I met her one day driving the wrong way down Second Street here in Columbus.
Many drivers are elderly and have response times that have slowed and judgment that is not what it used to be. We all hate to admit that. Certainly, I do, but it happens.
The point I am trying to make is that we all think we are driving well, but others may see it differently and police officers have no idea what the mental and physical condition of every driver on the road is.
Therefore, they do what they think best for the safety of all, and that may mean driving school.
I am 64 years old, and my day to have my driving ability or inability questioned is coming. I would be an unwilling, unhappy student in driving school, but I would take the training out of respect for those who would share the road with me.
I do not believe that law enforcement officers believe that everyone over a certain age is mentally or physically deficient. I do not believe there is age discrimination here.
I believe they are doing their jobs to keep all on the roads safe. I commend them for that.
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