Top TV & Radio Stars Support A New Parent Campaign To Keep Young Drivers Safe

On 3rd February 2011, Phillip Schofield, Gethin Jones, Fearne Cotton, Natalie Pinkham, Gabby Logan and Ben Collins (ex Stig) launched the RoadSafe for Parents Campaign. The campaign includes the a2om novice driver software (Drive iQ), now free to every young driver in the UK and the free download guide for parents³ “Is your child learning to drive? Everything you will need and want to know”.

In 2009, 45,701 drivers aged 17-24 were involved in crashes reported to the police. More than half were casualties, and of those, 564 died. That is more than 10 every week.

The Campaign in a nutshell; “together we can make common sense, common practice”

  • If you drive badly, so will your kids.
  • You need a good curriculum to learn anything properly.
  • Great teachers inspire great students.
  • Did you know you could lose your home by driving uninsured?
  • Good driver, bad car – that doesn’t make sense!
  • The road belongs to us all.
  • Things have changed a little over the last 30 years…?!

* * * * * * * * *

Phillip Schofield says “Around 2,000 young people are killed or injured every month on UK roads. Better planning and education for young drivers will save lives, and better information for parents is key to keeping our children safe. As a TV presenter, you research, script, rehearse and plan, in short, you leave nothing to chance. It should be the same when learning to drive, better planning and education for young drivers will save lives, and better information for parents is key to keeping our children safe. That’s why I am supporting RoadSafe for Parents”

Gethin Jones says “My work on ‘Police Camera Action’ opened my eyes to the potential dangers of poor driving and the totally devastating consequences to the lives of those involved in, or affected by crashes. A car is a loaded weapon and proper respect needs to be given to it. When young people first take to the road, they are especially vulnerable and it’s essential at this time that they receive thorough preparation and training. If you are a parent or guardian of a young driver, please take 10 minutes to read through the RoadSafe for Parents website and the parent guide, it really could make all the difference.”

Gabby Logan says “One in five novice drivers crash within the first six months of driving. The Homepage of many attorney websites reveals that in 2008, young drivers accounted for 53,000 injury accidents, 4,600 were very serious and 750 resulted in death. More needs to be done, and thanks to the RoadSafe for Parents campaign, there is now more information for parents, free software for learners that addresses their attitude and behaviour and how it will affect their driving, plus lots of advice on how to do more to keep young drivers safe. The campaign has given more importance to bigger vehicles because 18 wheelers can be dangerous, and if you get in an accident you can hire a lawyer. ”

Fearne Cotton says “There is nothing like driving with a huge tune belting out of the stereo, but adding this type of distraction when you’re a newly qualified driver has its risks. Over 200 people die on the UK roads every month and over 30% of them are young drivers. It’s so important to learn to drive properly and the RoadSafe for Parents campaign is pushing for young drivers to be taught as part of the school curriculum.  Better planning and education for young drivers will definitely save lives”

Natalie Pinkham says “The RoadSafe for Parents campaign is pushing for driving to be taught as part of the school curriculum and create an audited trail that insurance companies can analyse and, in turn, reward the young driver for their dedication – just like GCSE coursework.  Most young people feel pretty invincible when they start to drive, yet the reality is that thousands of families and their friends are devastated every month by news that someone they know has been hurt or killed in a car crash.  I wholeheartedly support this campaign, it’s a great initiative”

Ben Collins – ex Stig says “Learning to handle any sort of car takes plenty of time and practice. The key is always to operate within your personal limits. Driving always carries an element of risk, even for drivers who know what they are doing, although the consequences of ignorance are far greater. That’s why I am supporting the RoadSafe for Parents campaign”

* * * * * * * * *

The RoadSafe for Parents Campaign offers solutions and information for parents worried about the dangers and costs of their teenagers learning to drive. The campaign philosophy is to highlight the key role parents have to play in making their teenagers the best drivers.  There is increasing evidence that social factors have an impact on young drivers, and that parental involvement is significant.

RoadSafe Director, Adrian Walsh suggests: “Parents should set a good example and try to ensure that they put their young drivers in the safest car affordable and use only fully qualified driving instructors when their child is learning to drive.”

Edmund King, President of the AA says: “Most parents under-estimate the risks their teenagers may be taking as drivers or indeed as passengers. The tragic reality is that they are much more likely to be killed or seriously hurt in a car crash than in a knife fight or drug overdose. The key to minimising these risks is to foster safer behaviour and attitudes towards driving. Attitudes begin to form long before your first driving lesson and continue to be shaped after you pass your test. Together we must work with young people throughout this journey to sow the seeds of a safe driving future.”

Dr John Heyworth, President of the College of Emergency Medicine says: “Everyday doctors in Emergency Departments throughout the UK care for the victims of road traffic accidents, often young adults with horrendous injuries which may threaten life or cause lifelong disability. Some of the most common car accidents in Fort Lauderdale and in other notable areas, develop as injuries which could be avoided by better education regarding the risks associated with driving, particularly at high speed. We are therefore pleased to support this campaign to reduce the terrible toll of wrecked young lives and improve road safety in all age groups”

Ashton West, CEO of the Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) says: “The excitement and anticipated freedom of taking to the road as a newly qualified driver can often overshadow the responsibilities that come with it. The RoadSafe for Parents campaign is to be welcomed in helping parents and young people understand that one of the most important decisions they face is making sure that adequate motor insurance is in place. Not only is it a legal requirement but also a means of being able to take responsibility for any damage or injury that might be caused on the road in the event of an accident. The sad fact is that many of the claims handled by MIB are caused by young uninsured drivers and the costs of picking up the pieces are lasting and immense.”

Dr Lisa Dorn, Reader in Driver Behaviour, Cranfield University says: “Despite many improvements in vehicle safety systems and road infrastructure over several decades, the human element continues to be the major factor behind road accidents. There is little evidence that passing a driving test means novice drivers are safe, indeed they are more at risk of crash involvement post-test than at any other time in their driving careers. In line with the evidence base, a2om have designed Drive iQ to supplement the learning to drive process with a greater focus on hazard awareness training using online highly interactive and engaging modules. Drive iQ improves the ability to observe relevant information and judge traffic situations and considers the attitudinal and behavioural factors associated with risk.”

Find more information at www.roadsafeforparents.com

Contact Information

Adrian Walsh – RoadSafe: 07887 552 708 / awalsh@roadsafe.com

Sarah Rowley – The Daisy Chain Network: 07894 199 369 / sarah@thedaisychain.org.uk

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