does your car fit you?

AARP, the American Automobile Association (AAA) and the American Occupational Association all want to know: Does your car fit you?

To determine if it does or not, you’re invited to attend a free educational program that addresses comfort and safety concerns. CarFit sessions, available in and around Westchester, look at a 50-item checklist to make sure your car fits you.

Some of the key items assessed during a CarFit session include the following:

1. Can you safely see over the steering wheel?
Turns out, your eyes should be at least three inches above the steering wheel in order to have the best field of vision.

2. Is there room for the airbag to safely deploy?
The distance from the center of the steering wheel to your chest should be 10 inches. This will enable the air bag to inflate properly if an accident occurs.

3. And what about the head restraint at the top of your seat?
There should be two to 2-1/2 inches between your head and the restraint. If the distance is greater than that and you’re in an accident, your head will snap back with too much force and cause significant harm.

4. Does your seatbelt fit properly?
Your belt should rest across your chest and your hips – not at your neck. The CarFit team can make the necessary adjustments if needed.

In addition, they will check to see if your feet appropriately reach the gas and brake pedals.

5. Are you gripping the steering wheel properly?
Most of us were taught the 10 and 2 o’clock position to hold the wheel. While airbags have been in place for quite some time now, many of us have still not modified our grip: optimally, to 8 and 4 o’clock, which does take some getting used to.

CarFit volunteers will also show you, among other things, how to adjust all of your car mirrors to maximize driving safety.

The program was on hiatus for the winter, but is now starting up again. Interested drivers can reach out to the local coordinator, Kathleen Golisz, at 914-674-7814 or via email:

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