Dear Trooper Kathy: I need to take a defensive driving course. How old do I have to be to get this discount?


Dear Trooper Kathy: I need to take a defensive driving course. How old do I have to be to get this discount?

Trooper Kathy says: In Minnesota, once you have attained the age of 55, you shall receive a 10 percent discount on your insurance once you complete a defensive driving course. The first course must be an eight hour course. Every three years after that, you must take a four hour refresher class to maintain the 10 percent discount.

Nearly Half of Senior Drivers Worry About Giving Up Their Keys, AAA Survey Reveals As 10,000 Americans turn 65 every day, Tools for Driving Safer, Longer are Critical.

•Nearly half of senior drivers worry about losing their freedom and mobility when it’s time to give up the car keys, according to a recent survey by the American Automobile Association (AAA). 

•10,000 Americans turn 65 every day, AAA is helping aging drivers cope with the life-changing transitions facing them with expert advice and easy-to-find resources on its updated website for seniors and their families

•nearly 90 percent of senior drivers indicate that the inability to drive would be a problem, with almost half claiming it a serious problem.

•“By 2020 — just eight years from now — it’s estimated that nearly one in six people will be age 65 or older and most of them will be licensed to drive.

Gail Weinholzer, director, AAA Minnesota/Iowa. “No matter how active and healthy seniors are today, it’s evident that anxiety about giving up the keys is an age-old concern. Now is the time for seniors to equip themselves with the tools necessary to stay driving as long as safely possible and have a plan for when driving is no longer a safe option.”

Some tips for motorists age 65 and older include:

•“Self-police” their driving or avoid driving situations that put them at greater risk of a crash. Eighty percent of senior drivers voluntarily avoid one or more high-risk driving situations.

•More than half (61 percent) of these drivers avoid driving in bad weather;

•50 percent avoid night driving;

•42 percent avert trips in heavy traffic

•37 percent avoid unfamiliar roads. provides convenient, online access to a wealth of interactive material and AAA’s Senior Driver Safety Expos offer a local hands-on opportunity to sample AAA’s suite of free tools and programs.

•Smart Features for Mature Drivers – A guide to help identify vehicle features that can assist drivers with the visual, physical and mental changes that are frequently encountered as they age.

If you have any questions regarding traffic safety and/or traffic laws, e-mail Trooper Kathy at Sgt. Pederson will not offer advice on specific situations or real events, which involve law enforcement.