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Parent and driver DVD - views sought
Kirklees Council, in partnership with the DSA and LARSOA, is considering developing a DVD to raise parental awareness of the factors that increase the risks of crashes for newly qualified drivers. The partners are inviting road safety teams and others to express interest in order to assess the project's viability.
The DVD, which will be based on a similar programme in the USA called Check Points, will tell the story of a newly qualified driver and his friends on a night out. The story will refer to issues including alcohol, fatigue, distractions, seatbelts, peer pressure, speed and role models.
It will also offer advice to parents about how they can help make newly qualified drivers safer. The DVD will also cover selecting a driving instructor, post-test training, influencing behavior, and the need for pre- and post-test supervised private practice.
A driver agreement, which can be printed out and then signed, will also be included in the pack.
The partners have agreed that a master copy will be made available to road safety units, for them to reproduce as many copies as they require at minimum cost.
In order to ascertain the project's viability, road safety units and other organisations are invited to register their interest in using the resource. To do so contact Tracey Curle, Kirklees Metropolitan Council, Highways and Transportation Service, Flint St, Fartown, Huddersfield HD1 6LG, or 01484 22 11 57, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Young Asian drivers given safety lessons
Following a number of incidents involving young Asian male drivers in and around Blackburn, the Kick Start project has been launched to educate them about driving safely.
Youngsters aged between 15 and 19 years receive a series of 10 driving simulator lessons, and those aged 17-19 years receive 20 driving lessons. The project started in the first week of April and concludes this month.
Fareeha Ishtiaque, community development officer at the Healthy Living Centre, Blackburn said: "The aim is to enable young people to understand factors that could adversely affect driving. They receive training from fire, police and road safety professionals."
A drug expert also explains how dangerous drugs can be, and how driving under the influence of drugs has caused numerous accidents. Tutors from BSM are also on hand to advise on car maintenance.
For the full story go to; http://www.asianimage.co.uk
Korean TV visits Surrey school
A Korean TV crew recently visited Christchurch Junior School in New Malden, Surrey to film pupils learning about road safety.
The Korean Broadcasting Corporation crew filmed Junior Road Safety Officers and Year 3 pupils learning how to cross the road safely between parked cars and at a zebra crossing (with the help of a School Crossing Patrol), and carrying out bike safety checks.
James Parker, road safety and travel awareness unit manager, said: 'Korea has woken up to the need for urgent action to improve road safety. The UK is held up as the best example of reducing child casualties, and education is recognised as a key to this success."
For further information contact James Parker on 020 8547 5923, or James.Parker@rbk.kingston.gov.uk.
Specs trialled in 20mph zones
The Speed Enforcement Camera System (Specs) is being tested in residential areas in Camden, London, and Belfast to detect drivers averaging more than 20mph.
While Specs is already in use in other parts of the country, this is the first time it has been used to enforce speed limits in a whole area. The system calculates a car's average speed and transmits the data to a processing centre. It is seen as an alternative to road humps.
The London trial started in 2005 and runs until March 2007, but as it is a trial no penalties are being issued to speeding drivers.
"In the future Specs could open up the possibility of enforcing speed across a residential area using only cameras installed at the entrance and exit junctions," said a Camden council spokesman.
The technology will need Home Office approval - which is expected later this year - before it can be rolled out.
For the full story go to: http://news.bbc.co.uk
'Auntie Dot' celebrates 30 years as SCP
Dorothy Jones has recently celebrated 30 years service as a school crossing patrol at a village primary school near Wrexham in north Wales.
'Auntie Dot' became the SCP at Minera on 7 June 1976. In 2003, she was voted Ready Brek SCP of the year when the service celebrated its 50th anniversary.
A special assembly was held at the school on the morning of Wednesday 7 June 2006 to mark Dot's 30 years of service. Dot was presented with a pin (she has quite a collection on her hat) and a pen set, and Wrexham County Borough Council had a cut glass vase engraved to commemorate this special occasion.
For further information contact Veronica Jones on 01978 297147, or email@example.com
Endorsement for community speed-watch
Community speed-watch schemes have been endorsed by the Audit Commission as an example of cost-effective 'co-production' of local services (Surveyor, 15 June).
Almost one-third of police forces in England and Wales are now training villagers to use speed guns, commission chief executive Steve Bundred told last week's Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accounts conference.
For the full story go to: http://www.surveyormagazine.com
Big rise in TT speeding offences
Police on the Isle of Man issued almost 240 summonses for speeding cars and motorbikes during the 2006 TT - four times the number issued last year.
More police on the roads, particularly on the mountain circuit, resulted in more prosecutions for speeding. Officers spent more than 150 hours at the side of roads with laser speed detectors, said inspector Richard Power, adding that the strong action will prove a deterrent to others.
For the full story go to: http://news.bbc.co.uk/
Testing times in tunnel
A full-scale exercise simulating two major accidents at the Dartford Crossing tested the emergency services recently (Surveyor, 15 June).
The crossing was closed between 1am and 6am on Sunday 11 June. The exercise, involving emergency services from Kent and Essex, the Highways Agency and crossing operator Le Crossing, simulated a multiple pile-up and a separate road tanker-spill inside the tunnel. Around 100 volunteers, including 30 'casualties', were evacuated.
For the full story go to: http://www.surveyormagazine.com
Next Stop Heathery Knowe
Pupils at East Kilbride's Heathery Knowe Primary have celebrated the launch of the school's first Walking Bus.
Walking Buses can reduce the amount of traffic on the school run - but despite the enthusiasm of the pupils and staff the school could not initially recruit volunteers to supervise the Walking Bus.
School travel co-coordinator Lorraine Hare said: "The two parent volunteers at Heathery Knowe join a growing list of Walking Bus escorts around South Lanarkshire who give their time to help children enjoy the benefits of walking to school in the added safety of an escorted group."
For further information contact Andrew Thompson, Andrew.Thompson@southlanarkshire.gsx.gov.uk
Cameras cause jams at junctions
Cameras that detect vehicles blocking yellow box junctions are increasing congestion rather than improving traffic flow, a study has found.
More than 100,000 drivers have received penalties in the past two years for stopping in yellow boxes. They were detected by closed-circuit television cameras, which were introduced in London by TfL in 2004, and are to be installed nationwide to record minor traffic offences.
The cameras were supposed to reduce queues and journey times but TfL has admitted that traffic flow has fallen at junctions since the cameras were installed. Many drivers wait an extra few seconds after the box has become empty, or fail to follow other vehicles into the box when the exit is clear for the driver in front.
TfL studied traffic flow at the junctions before and after the cameras were installed and found that up to 150 fewer vehicles an hour passed through yellow box junctions once camera enforcement began. Some of the 16 boxes in the study showed an improvement in traffic flow but overall it was 4 per cent worse. The cameras did, however, reduce by 23 per cent the number of drivers stopping inside the boxes.
Further monitoring will be carried out this summer to confirm the findings. If it becomes clear that the cameras are not working, TfL will consider redesigning the junctions or removing yellow boxes.
For the full story go to: http://www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,2-2217605,00.html.