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Imagine what it’s like to be near-sighted and drive your car to the corner store without your eyeglasses. It would be a scary (and dangerous) trip. Yet many drivers today think nothing about traveling farther than that with hearing loss. When you consider the importance of being able to hear sirens, warning signals and horns, it is critical that anyone operating a motor vehicle be able to hear properly.
Approximately 36 million Americans suffer from hearing loss. It is the leading disability in this country, with more than half of those affected under the age of 65. Untreated hearing loss can affect your ability to understand speech and can negatively impact your social and emotional well-being. And the ability to hear properly greatly impacts your ability to drive safely. It’s important that all drivers have their hearing checked regularly.
AAA members can save 40% on a wide variety of hearing aids from Newport Audiology Centers. Also included in this new program are the following benefits:
To find a Newport Audiology office near you, call 800-AAA-HEAR or 800-222-4327.
The average cost to own and operate a sedan has risen 4.8% to 56.6 cents per mile, or $8,487 per year, based on 15,000 miles of annual driving.
Rising fuel prices are a key factor in this year’s “Your Driving Costs” study, with a national average cost of regular unleaded gas 12.7% higher than the cost of fuel in last year’s study. Paying more at the pump is not only increasing the operational costs of vehicles, but it’s also affecting depreciation values. With the growing appeal of more fuel-efficient vehicles, small sedans are experiencing less depreciation and holding their value longer.
Tire and insurance costs have also contributed to the increase in overall costs. The average cost of full-coverage insurance on sedans rose 5.7% over last year, while tire costs increased an average of 8.7%.
AAA’s “Your Driving Costs” study analyzes the cost to own and operate a vehicle in the U.S. each year. Ownership costs factored into the study include the cost of insurance, license and registration fees, taxes, depreciation and finance charges. Operational costs in the study include fuel, maintenance and tires.
AAA Colorado and Delta Dental of Colorado have joined forces to provide AAA Colorado members three affordable dental coverage options with discounted rates. The dental plans offer:
AAA Colorado members who are over 18 and Colorado residents are eligible. To learn more or to enroll, visit www.AAA.com/insurance. Once membership is validated through the AAA website, members will be automatically redirected to Delta Dental’s AAA Colorado member page for complete information on the three dental plans designed exclusively for AAA Colorado members, and quick online enrollment options.
All enrollments must take place through www.AAA.com/insurance. Brochures are available in all AAA offices statewide.
On July 17, AAA Colorado will host a free Show Your Card & Save Partner Expo, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Denver office. Members are invited to learn more about the businesses that offer AAA discounts, and sign up for a chance to win great door prizes.
Members can also register to have an Approved Auto Repair technician perform a free safety check on their car. Representatives from Discover Bank will be on hand to answer member questions to members about AAA Financial Services’ various deposit options. Seminars at the Expo will also cover certificates of deposit, money market accounts and individual retirement accounts.
The Denver office is one block east of Colorado Boulevard at 4100 E. Arkansas Avenue.
At the Royal Gorge Bridge and Park, looking down is even more breathtaking than looking up. The world’s highest suspension bridge is only one of the attractions at this AAA TourBooks GEM (Great Experience for Members). The Royal Gorge also features the world’s highest Skycoaster, the world’s steepest incline railway and the world’s longest aerial tram.
Built in only six months during 1929, the bridge spans the scenic Royal Gorge, more than 1,000 feet above the Arkansas River. Visitors can walk or drive across the narrow bridge. Between May and September, children’s attractions, a theater, a miniature train, a carousel, a petting zoo, and walking and biking trails are also open. The 10-acre Wapiti Western Wildlife Park features native Colorado wildlife in their natural habitat, including white bison, Rocky Mountain elk and bighorn sheep.
Royal Gorge Bridge and Park, located west of Canon City on Highway 50, opens at 10 a.m. daily. Park admission is charged before crossing the bridge. (RVs and large vehicles are not permitted to cross.)
Other AAA TourBook-listed attractions nearby include the Royal Gorge Regional Museum and History Center, and the Royal Gorge Route Railroad, a 24-mile scenic journey along the Arkansas River and through the Gorge.
AAA Tour Books are free to members. Get the 2010 edition at branch offices (see page 11 for locations) or at www.AAA.com/travel. For information on the Royal Gorge Bridge and Park visit www.royalgorgebridge.com.
Roundabouts, also called traffic circles, can frighten first-timers. To the uninitiated, these circular intersections where traffic travels counterclockwise around a center island can seem confusing. However, roundabouts bring many safety benefits.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) reports about 2,000 roundabouts in the United States and tens of thousands worldwide.
Roundabouts improve safety because traffic slows to 15-20 mph, and all cars travel in the same direction, eliminating dangerous right-angle left turns. According to the IIHS, motor vehicle crashes have declined by 40% where roundabouts have been installed, and crashes with injuries have dropped by 80%.
Pedestrians also benefit because they cross slow-moving traffic traveling in only one direction, and the crossing distance is short compared to traditional intersections. Because roundabouts require less stopping and starting, they also reduce vehicle emissions and fuel consumption. Finally, roundabouts enhance aesthetics by providing opportunities for green landscaping.
Most drivers come to prefer roundabouts after becoming accustomed to them. An IIHS study in three communities where single-lane roundabouts replaced stop sign controlled intersections found that support for the new drive pattern increased from 31% before construction to 63% shortly after. After a year, that number increased to 70%, proving that safety is something we can all get our minds around.
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