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Donostia - San Sebastián - AENEAS Measure #3
Older People and Road Safety

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A short presentation to kick-off the workshop
Then, the training continues in small groups


It is clear that none of us like to get older or to be old. Normally we think that we are in better conditions than we really are. And this lack of consciousness sometimes drives us to not to behave apropriately in roads and streets.

If we analyze data from the local police, we can see that a quite an important percentage of the accidents are old people involved. On the one hand, the mobility is worse than when we were young, we do not see and hear as before and our behaviour is different. On the other side, our way of driving is not as it was some years ago. We have seen that some training could be useful among older people in order to promote and to ensure safety in the streets of Donostia San Sebastián.

Road Safety. Walking down the streets…safer.

The municipality of Donostia-San Sebastián, has planned to organise twenty workshops in collaboration with the Real Automovil Club Vasco Navarro (RACVN). In these workshops we try to see how the behaviour of older people is in relation with traffic safety and how we can promote and improve it. To develop this training, as it was before said, the role played by the RACVN is very important. They provide us the material used in the workshops and all the technical aid we need.

Normally we make a short presentation to know what the AENEAS project is and which cities are involved in this project. After that we explain what sustainable mobility is and how it has changed along the years. Once we finish this small presentation, we present some practical cases of different safety problems in some well known places of the cities. They discuss in groups about the cases and they provide various solutions. Later, we present what each group has proposed for each example and what must be done.

People take part in a very active way. They argue about their own behaviour and if they really act always in a proper way. Questions are usually very interesting, although sometimes they ask us some questions about the municipality out from our scope.

Lessons learnt

We see from the enquiries that their intention to change their mobility uses is not going to be really high. Some of them still drive, and most of them are men. But, most of them, even the “petrol heads”, show a positive way in order to awareness about traffic safety and respect to pedestrians and cyclists.

We have seen sometimes a too much trusting behaviour. Some of the people that take part in our workshops think that cars always stop and they do not have any danger, even when they do not cross roads in the appropriate places. We try, and normally we get, to convince this people that this is not the suitable way to ensure their own personal safety. Normally they understand (normally they know) that they must change this way to go on the streets.

Sometimes is difficult to focus the main goal of the workshops. People like to say their own experiences and often these experiences do not have too much to do with the subject we are talking about.

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