Road-safety for Israel’s Senior Citizens.
Hebrew: בטיחות בדרכים לקשישים
Israeli drivers are known to drive fast, take chances and be a little reckless. Anashim B’Adom is an organization that promotes road safety amongst Israel’s senior citizens.
Anashim B’Adom recommends and suggests the following road safety measures for seniors:
- Cross the road at designated pedestrian crossings.
- Do not take a chance and cross when the pedestrian light is red.
- Before you cross at the pedestrian crossing, don’t forget to look in both directions. Even though there is a pedestrian crossing, and you have the right of way, it is no assurance against speeding cars and careless drivers.
- Distractions! Speaking on a mobile phone, or similar, can distract your attention when crossing a road. Please refrain from talking or texting while crossing the road.
- If you are behind the wheel, take your medical limitations or conditions* into consideration. Wear your glasses if necessary.
- Stopping your vehicle, or standing and waiting on the “shoulders” of the road can be very dangerous. Israeli drivers sometimes try to beat the traffic and use the shoulders as an extra lane. Naturally they are driving beyond the speed limit when they exercise this maneuver.
- If you are on the sidewalk, please keep a safe distance from the edge of the road.
- If there is no pavement or sidewalk, and you are forced to walk on the shoulder, keep to the left so that you are facing oncoming traffic.
- Whether driving or walking, be extra careful at dusk when ease of visibility is lessened.
- Wear clothes that are brighter in color so that you can be seen easily.
- Be extra careful when crossing the road with your young grandchildren who are depending on you to get across safely.
*Anashim B’Adom list the following as medical conditions that might impact your driving ability
- Impaired vision: long distance, short distance and peripheral
- A shortened concentration span
- Impaired hearing
- Slower reaction time
- Local driving regulations
- Retirement planning resources and support services
- Info for navigating Israel’s medical & healthcare system
Converting your license in Israel
New olim are required to convert their license to an Israeli one, within the first year of their Aliyah. However experienced a driver you may be, we suggest you take a few lessons to familiarize yourself with local conditions and driving etiquette. Budget around 150NIS per lesson.
Israel’s public transport is efficient and while it is important to maintain a sense of independence and control, your safety is paramount. Buses, trains, sheruts and taxis can take you wherever you need to go. If you are willing and physically able, consider using public transport instead. Local buses are equipped with a hydraulic step which the bus driver can lower when you enter or alight the bus. Inter city buses however, do not have such a step. Taxi drivers are generally patient and will help you to get out of the car if you ask.