Older drivers can feel more comfortable on the road with the restart of refresher driving sessions.

Durham County Council is restarting its Safer Driving with Age (SAGE) driving assessment, which was temporarily stopped due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Designed to help residents over 55 drive safely as they get older, SAGE consists of a 40-minute session with a qualified driving instructor.

Residents can take a drive in their own car, along roads they know well and use regularly, and afterward, the assessor will provide feedback on ways to make their driving safer.

SAGE has been running successfully in County Durham for a number of years with many drivers gaining huge benefits from attending the driving assessment. Some drivers repeat the experience annually.

Following the temporary closure due to the coronavirus pandemic, SAGE has restarted again and is now taking on new applicants.

Cllr Elizabeth Scott, Durham County Council’s Cabinet member for economy and partnerships, said: “As motorists with lots of years of experience, many older drivers can spot danger on the road sooner than they could when they were 20. However, over time roads have become busier, new traffic systems have been introduced, and there are many more road markings now.

“There are other ways to travel rather than driving, but most people like the freedom of their own car. If you want to continue to drive, it is very important to keep your driving standards up. SAGE is designed to help people keep driving for as long as possible.”

Assessments are available all year round. Residents who are interested can call the council’s road safety team on 03000 268172 or email road.safety@durham.gov.uk

To fill out an application form and find more information, residents can also visit www.durham.gov.uk/article/6545/Older-driver-training

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