Tag Archives: Saguache Roads

Trooper Tips: Older Drivers

By Master Trooper Gary Cutler

Driving is a feeling of freedom you get when you’re able to just travel wherever you wish.  But, there may come a point in time when either you or someone close to you must make the decision to put the keys away and find another way to commute.

Talking to an older person about their driving can be difficult and is often delayed until their driving is to a point of being dangerous.  But if delayed too long, it can be a hesitation that can turn fatal.

I speak from personal experience when I lost my grandmother in a crash.  The signs were there prior to the fatal crash, but we failed to see them as a serious enough problem and hesitated in having her stop driving.  It started with a few scratches here and there on the car, and pulling into the garage a little too far.  Perhaps, if we had acted upon those signs we may have had her around longer.

Years later when another driving situation approached my family, we didn’t hesitate to take action.  My father began to show signs of having trouble driving due to early-onset dementia and we took steps to keep him from driving and possibly hurting himself or someone else.  A problem you may face is the older driver believing they are driving fine, when in fact you are seeing dangerous problems.  I won’t tell you it was easy to have the conversation.  My father was upset with us for a while, but I would do it again to make sure it keeps everyone safe.

Older drivers get tips from Colorado State Patrol Trooper Gary Cutler
Night driving can get tricky for older motorists.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that in 2018, 19% of all fatal crashes were caused by drivers 65 years and older.  Now this doesn’t mean just because you turn 65 you should have your driver’s license taken from you.  Far from it, it just means it’s time to start being aware of any changes.  For a start, keep track of eyesight, physical fitness, and reflexes.

Saguache Today columnist Trooper Gary Cutler is the Public Information Officer for the Colorado State Patrol. A Public Information Officer is on-call 24 hours a day, seven days a week to answer media questions.

CDOT Meeting July 17

Get involved in Colorado’s next transportation plan without even leaving your home! Join the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) telephone town hall for Southwest Colorado this Wednesday, July 17 at 5:30 p.m. Listen in, ask a question and give input on what CDOT’s transportation priorities should be.

To be included, text CDOTSW to 828282 and you’ll receive a call when the conversation begins.  This telephone town hall is for the following counties: Alamosa, Archuleta, Chaffee, Conejos, Costilla, Dolores, Hinsdale, La Plata, Mineral, Montezuma, Montrose, Ouray, Rio Grande, Saguache, San Juan and San Miguel.

Saguache County is in the Southwest Region on the new CDOT Regional Map.

A Vehicle By Any Other Name

It’s summertime, the season when folks get out into the Colorado backcountry, by foot, by bike and yes, by motorized vehicle. So it’s time to check in with Saguache County Clerk and Recorder Trish Gilbert for some news about how to – or if you need to – register these vehicles so that they are legal – and safe!

By Trish Gilbert, Saguache County Clerk & Recorder

All terrain/watercraft vehicles are vehicles which are designed and manufactured for off-road use only. The manufacturers of these vehicles have stated that modifications cannot be made to make the vehicle roadworthy.

Examples of Off-Road Vehicles:

  • Mini Bikes
  • Golf-Carts
  • Go-Carts
  • ATV’s With 3 or More Wheels
  • Trail Bikes
  • Dune Buggies
  • Snowmobiles

Off-Road Vehicles and all watercraft are not registered as motor vehicles.  Registration may be obtained from the following agency: Colorado Parks and Wildlife – Registration Unit, 13787 S Highway 85, Littleton CO 80125, (303) 791-1920. www.parks.state.co.us

Toy Vehicles. “Toy vehicle” means any vehicle that has wheels and is not designated for use on public highways or for off-road use. Examples of Toy Vehicles:

  • Go-ped
  • Kamikaze Boards
  • Mini Bikes
  • Hoverboards
  • Pocket Bikes
  • Stand-up Scooters
  • Segway