Driver safety crash course
by Jill Dickie
Students from Dargaville High School and Ruawai College participated in the annual Rotary Youth Driver Awareness programme held at the Dargaville Racecourse recently. Local Rotarians guided the 120 students around six 30-minute presentations.
Topics included studying personalities and moods and how these affect actions, factors affecting road safety and the effects of crashes and driver distractions. Seatbelts and vehicle safety were also explained with a practical demonstration of how long it takes a car to stop in various conditions.
Crash effects were brought home with a talk by the survivor of a crash who discussed his hoon driving and after having disabled the car’s safety stability features. He explained how the resulting brain injury destroyed his career. Another session dealt with the road death of a young driver, its causes and the effect on her family and friends.
Rotary President, Viv Trounsen, said the club is proud to have been involved in bringing the RYDA programme to Dargaville youth for many years, ensuring they have a much greater understanding of the complexities involved in driving and how to be safe on the roads.
RYDA, presented by Road Safety Education, was developed by Rotary to give young drivers, at the age they are getting their licences, an understanding of factors that affect driving, with the goal of their developing safe driving habits before acquiring bad ones.