The Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles strives to keep mature drivers on the road as long as possible with a primary concern of safety for all. Whether you are a neighbor, family member, or concerned friend, you have an important opportunity to make the roads of Vermont a safer place to drive.
Warning Signs of Unsafe Driving
If you believe a driver may be a hazard on the road, encourage him or her to visit the AAA Senior Driver site to use their Self-Rating Tool. You may also assess their driving ability by reviewing the following warning signs:
- Diminished eyesight.
- Suffered stroke or heart attack.
- Difficulty negotiating sharp turns and intersections.
- Hesitation over right-of-way decisions.
- Becoming lost on familiar routes.
- Feeling nervous or exhausted after driving.
- Receiving traffic violations or being found at fault in crashes.
- Neglecting to buckle the seat belt.
- Difficulty moving foot between pedals.
- Difficulty merging onto freeways or turning onto busy streets.
- Relying only on mirrors rather than turning fully to check blind spots.
- Missing stop signs and traffic signals.
- Frequently weaving, straddling, and drifting into other lanes without signaling.
- Attempting to turn from the wrong lane.
- Receiving frequent honks from other motorists.
- Finding scrapes and dents on vehicles, mailboxes, and other stationary objects.
These are just a few of the many warning signs of unsafe driving. If you feel the driver may present a hazard on the road, it may be time for the driver to give up the keys. This can be a very difficult call for you to make, especially if the driver is a parent or other close figure used to having their independence. What you must keep in mind is their safety, and the safety of others must come first.
A re-examination is when a person's driving skills must be reevaluated based on one or more factors, including the driver's physical or mental condition or driving record. A family member, physician, or public safety officer may recommend a re-examination. Other times, information in a license renewal application, driving record, or disabled parking placard application may prompt a re-examination.
The re-examination involves the evaluation of an individual by a DMV examiner. It consists of a vision test and a driving test. A written test may be required depending on specific circumstances. To prepare for the test, you may wish to enroll in a driving school to improve your skills. Following the re-examination, the examiner will decide whether any action should be taken regarding your driving privileges, such as restrictions, suspension, or revocation.
How to Request a Driver Re-Examination
If appropriate evaluations and recommendations have been made and the driver continues to refuse to hand over the keys, a request may be sent to the DMV asking for a re-examination of the driver. Written requests may be submitted by mail (mailing address) or email us using our DMV Contact Form.
Requests for re-examination should include as much of the following information as possible:
- Driver's name
- Driver's date of birth (if not known, indicate the driver's approximate age)
- Driver's address
- License plate number(s) of the driver's vehicle(s)
- Your name
- Your contact information (mailing address and phone number)
- Your relationship with the driver
- Reason for wanting a re-examination of the driver (this must be specific and should include details of any personal observations)
NOTE: A driver referred for re-examination has the right to know who recommended them for review. Requests for re-examination can not be submitted anonymously.
A physical or mental condition can sometimes impair a driver's ability to operate a motor vehicle safely. The most common of these conditions is poor vision; others include cognitive skills like memory, coordination, and flexibility.
In some circumstances, drivers may have a restriction placed on their licenses. The types of restrictions vary and are based on the results of the vision test, driving test, and the examiner's assessment. A restricted license ensures that you are driving within your abilities. Some of the possible license restrictions are those which:
- Require eyeglasses or corrective contact lenses to be worn
- Require special mechanical devices (Special Brakes, Hand Controls, or Other Adaptive Devices)
Public Transit Section
The Public Transit Section provides financial and technical assistance to transit districts, transit authorities, municipal transit systems, and non-profit public transit systems. This function is carried out through the administration of state and federal programs relating to general public transportation and transit programs specific to the needs of senior citizens and persons with disabilities. For more information, visit the Vtrans Public Transit page.
Resources for Mature Drivers and CareGivers
- The Vermont Department of Disabilities, Aging, and Independent Living (DAIL) is responsible for all community-based long-term care services for older Vermonters, people with developmental disabilities, people with traumatic brain injuries, and people with physical disabilities.
- The Vermont Department of Health has numerous resources for older adult drivers.