Q: My mother is in her 70s and insists on driving herself everywhere she goes! Twice, when I’ve been in the car with her, I’ve had to remind her to put her seat belt on. Does the DMV have some sort of test she can take to see if she is still OK to drive?
A: Most definitely. Visit the DMV Web site at www.dmv.ca.gov and click on the Seniors tab, which connects you to a Senior Driver Self-Assessment test you can take with your mother.
Q: I’m planning on riding my bike to work. I did a test run of my route and found that some parts of the street didn’t have a shoulder or bicycle lane and the traffic lane was very narrow. Can I take the traffic lane and still be safe?
A: When you’re faced with these conditions on the road, you can use the traffic lane, but make sure you ride closer to the center of the lane. This will prevent motorists from dangerously attempting to squeeze past you when there isn’t enough room. You should also take the traffic lane when you’re traveling at the same speed as the traffic around you. This will keep you out of the motorist’s blind spots and reduce conflicts with right-turning traffic. For more safety tips for bicyclists and motorists, go to www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/brochures/fast_facts/ffdl37.htm.
Q: I’m interested in preparing to qualify for a Commercial Drivers License. Is there a driver handbook I can review?
A: Yes. You can get an online version at www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/comlhdbk/comlhdbk.pdf, where you’ll learn about driving safety for commercial drivers, transporting cargo safely, air brakes, transporting passenger and much more.
Q: I know the California Driver Handbook is available in English and Spanish. Are there any other languages available? I need an Armenian version.
A: Absolutely! You can go to www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/pubs.htm to find an Armenian PDF version of the handbook. Other languages available are Chinese, Korean, Punjabi, Russian, Tagalog and Vietnamese. You may also obtain the handbook at any of the department’s field offices or by calling the department’s Telephone Service Center at 800-777-0133.
Q: Are there any tips on what kinds of clothing to wear when riding a motorcycle so that I can make sure people will see me?
A: Most crashes occur in broad daylight. However, it’s advisable to wear brightly colored clothing such as a bright orange, yellow or green jacket or vest to increase your chances of being seen at night. Brightly colored helmets can also help others see you. Reflective materials on a vest and on the sides of your helmet can be an option as well. For more information, check out the California Motorcycle Handbook on the DMV Web site at www.dmv.ca.gov/pubs/pubs.htm.
Q: I’m disabled and have a service animal with me at all times. Is my dog allowed to come with me into the DMV office?
A: Yes, absolutely they are allowed. Under the Americans With Disabilities Act, a service animal is any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal trained to provide assistance to an individual with a disability. Animals that meet this definition are considered service animals, whether or not they’ve been licensed or certified by a state or local government.
The DMV is a department under the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency, under the direction of Secretary Dale E. Bonner. The DMV licenses drivers, maintains driving records, registers and tracks official ownership of vehicles and vessels, investigates auto and identity-related fraud, and licenses car dealers, driving schools and traffic violator schools. For more information about the DMV, visit www.dmv.ca.gov.