Port Alberni the closest place for assessment

Older drivers need to drive over the hump to find out if they are fit to drive

The provincial government is opening nine more locations for those drivers, including seniors, who are referred to take the functional cognitive assessment.

The number of locations has grown to 28 from 15 in 2011, with new locations just added in Campbell River, Duncan, Penticton, Port Alberni, Powell River, Salmon Arm, Terrace, Vernon and Williams Lake. Earlier this year, DriveABLE service centres opened in Chilliwack, Cranbrook, North Vancouver and Richmond.

The provincial government says the majority of referrals to DriveABLE by the Office of the Superintendent of Motor Vehicles (OSMV) stem from reports to OSMV from medical practitioners who are concerned about an individual’s cognitive abilities related to safe driving.

In 2011, OSMV reviewed 140,000 driver medical examination reports, requiring  about 2,700 or two per cent of those drivers to undertake the assessment.

Government covers the cost of both the in-office and on-road assessments for all drivers it refers.

DriveABLE assessments in Penticton, Powell River, Salmon Arm, Terrace, Vernon and Williams Lake will be based out of the local Service BC office. The provincial government says  it will monitor client levels at all locations to assess how best to provide assessments.                                 — NEWS Staff