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Shannon Weidemann
Shannon Weidemann
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Washington D.C. Removes Road Test Requirement for Elderly

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The District of Columbia tried to inact a measure to require drivers that are older than 75 and renewing their license to undergo a written test and road test. Drivers, AAA, and the AARP all protested the new measure saying it was unfair to the elderly. Washington D.C. was trying to prevent motor vehicle accidents.

“We’re not going to wait until there’s a horrific accident and then wring our hands and say, ‘There was nothing we could have done,'” Acting DMV director Lucinda Babers said last week, before Fenty changed the policy.

In the district and elsewhere, officials are bracing for an uptick in older drivers, as aging baby boomers swell the ranks of the elderly.

DMV officials discovered a decades-old law on the district’s books that gives the agency the right to require drivers over 75 to retake the road test and the written test upon renewal every five years. The department began using that power in May 2006.

The requirement has now been removed. Instead they will rely on people reporting concerns about elderly drivers on a case by case basis. Drivers over 70 must also appear in person to renew their license.