You love the library but hate
its long lines and late fees.
Problem solved: More than
8,000 branches worldwide
allow patrons to remotely
download digital audio
books—for free and without
penalties. New OverDrive
software lets you transfer
online files to your personal
media player and burn CDs.
When titles are due, they
expire automatically from
your player; other readers can then borrow files,
making fines obsolete. Find
books in your area at search
. overdrive.com. —L.Q. W.
Books for Free
S TRAP HANGER
Supportive aid helps
occupants as they
enter and exit.
S WIVEL SEAT
guides a person into
Vroom for Improvement
HOW TO ADD AFFORDABLE SAFET Y FEATURES TO YOUR PARENTS’ CAR
FROM LEFT: ILLUSTRATION BY JAMESON SIMPSON; PAUL BURNS/GETTY IMAGES
WHEN YOU were
a teenager, your
about your driving.
Now you worry
about theirs: older
drivers, with their more fragile bones
and bodies, are more likely than
younger drivers to be seriously in-
jured or killed if involved in a crash,
according to an AARP research re-
port. And an estimated 37,000 people
65 and older are injured each year
simply entering or exiting vehicles—
often because of falls—the Centers
for Disease Control and Prevention
(CDC) has found. Manufacturers are
adding more safety features to newer
vehicles, but you can easily improve
Mom and Dad’s old car with a few
Get a grip Hook an inexpensive
strap hanger or grip bar to the door
frame to give your folks something
to hold on to as they get in and out.
These aids help to prevent falls,
which are the most common cause
of nonfatal injuries for older adults,
notes the CDC.
Do the twist Put in a swivel seat, a
portable cushion that turns 360 degrees, to support drivers and passengers who need to back into their cars,
says geriatric care manager Marion
Somers, Ph. D.
Boost visibility Add a wider
rearview mirror—such as a 15-inch
panoramic model—to reduce blind
spots, Somers suggests. A back-up
camera, which transmits video to
an interior monitor mounted on the
dashboard, also can help.
These nonelectric add-ons are sold
for less than $55 at Dynamic Living
or ActiveForever (800-377-8033;
activeforever.com). Back-up cameras,
for less than $100, can be found at
large retailers such as Target and Wal-Mart. —Leslie Quander Wooldridge
HELPING HAND Donate your
hours and skills to a good cause.
Don’t feel bad if you can’t
donate money to charity
this year. With nonprofit
budgets shrinking, service
opportunities abound. And
April is National Volunteer
Month, so you can start
thinking about giving the
gift of time. Nonprofits
are seeking to recruit and
retain boomers from year
to year, according to the
Corporation for National
and Community Service.
For short-term options,
consider AARP’s new
Create The Good initiative,
which helps 50-plus volunteers find easy and quick
ways to serve others (visit
details). —Audrey Goodson
Short on Money?
Give Your Time