Tuesday Jul 03 2012
By: George Valverde ? Director, California Department of Motor Vehicles
?Ask George? Expert Answers to Common DMV Questions
Do you have questions about general driving related requirements like registration and insurance? Are you unclear about laws and restrictions related to driving? The California Department of Motor Vehicles has answers. Save Time. Go Online at www.DMV.ca.gov. Q: My mother is 65-years-old and I am not exactly sure if she is still fit to drive. Is there a test she can take online that will determine if she is still a safe driver? A: The DMV senior website has a variety of resources for senior citizens including a senior self-assessment. Your mother can take the self-assessment test to determine if she is able to manage her personal safety as well as the safety of others. The test can be found at www.DMV.ca.gov/about/senior/senior_top.htm;follow the link to Senior Driver Self- Assessment. Q: In what ways does the DMV protect consumers against identity theft? A: Identification cards are a major target of identity fraud. Since the DMV issues primary California ID cards, we do everything possible to protect your identity. Some of the things that the DMV implements to help secure your identity include: · When renewing in a field office, or replacing a lost or stolen driver license or ID card, department representatives verify your personal information (height, weight, hair, and eye color, etc.) and check your photo on the DMV database · Customers applying for a California driver license or ID card for the first time are required to provide a birth verification document, an acceptable document to prove legal presence in the United States, and their Social Security Number · DMV electronically verifies legal presence documents with the Department of Homeland Security · DMV electronically verifies the Social Security Number with the Social Security Administration · A driver license or ID card will not be issued until all information provided is verified · DMV employees are continuously trained on fraud document detection · Companies, such as auto dealerships or driving schools, licensed by DMV are monitored regularly to ensure their compliance with the law and regulations · Registered owner(s) requesting replacement license plates or a duplicate ownership certificate for a vehicle are required to provide a California driver license or ID card to prove identity For more information on how the DMV helps to protect your identity, please visit www.DMV.ca.gov. Q: I?ve been a victim of road rage. What do you recommend that I do to avoid angry drivers? A: I?m sorry to hear about your road rage experience. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) one-third of all crashes and two-thirds of all traffic-related fatalities are caused by aggressive driving. To avoid any collisions involving aggressive and violent drivers, here are a few things to remember: · Allow yourself plenty of time to reach your destination · Don?t cut off other drivers · Don?t drive slowly in the left (fast) lane · Don?t tailgate · Don?t make gestures to other drivers · Use your horn for emergencies only · Avoid eye contact with an angry driver · Give an angry driver plenty of space Remember, if an angry driver persists and you feel that it is a safety issue; please do not hesitate to call 911. For more information on driver safety, go online at www.DMV.ca.gov. The DMV is a department under the Business, Transportation and Housing Agency, which is under the direction of Acting Undersecretary Traci Stevens. 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.