12 November 2010
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents is proud to announce that its Young Drivers at Work Project has won a Prince Michael International Road Safety Award.
A presentation was made to RoSPA’s road safety team at the safety charity’s Annual Meeting in Birmingham today. The Royal Awards recognise achievements in road safety and are presented annually to the most outstanding examples of innovation in the field across the world.
RoSPA’s Young Drivers at Work Project, carried out between 2008 and 2010, began with a groundbreaking study to develop a better understanding of the risks faced, and created, by drivers aged 17 to 24 while they are at work.
Using the findings, RoSPA then developed a Young Drivers at Work Workshop, during which young employees discuss their own experiences of driving for work. The discussions encourage participants to reflect on personal tendencies and assumptions that affect safety, as well as the underlying causes of accidents such as poor journey planning. Participants then suggest strategies to improve their safety and identify what they could do to successfully put them into action.
Importantly, the young drivers also talk about what support their employers could give them (e.g. easing of unrealistic deadlines) and how this could be communicated with managers. Relevant information can then be fed back to managers after the workshop.
RoSPA’s project was funded by the Department of Transport (DfT) and conducted with the help of the DfT, Driving Standards Agency, local councils, RoadSafe and Tesco.com. To ensure the workshop can be used by as many people as possible, an online toolkit is freely available at www.rospa.com/roadsafety/youngdriversatwork/
RoSPA’s award was presented by David Jamieson, former road safety minister, RoadSafe board member and vice-chairman of the West Midlands Road Safety Partnership, who said: “Well researched programmes, like RoSPA’s, thoroughly deserve the recognition these awards give. Young drivers are one of the highest risk groups on our roads. Working with them to develop strategies that address the underlying causes of crashes is essential to improving safety. All businesses should adopt this approach.”
Tom Mullarkey, RoSPA’s chief executive, said: “Duncan Vernon and Lindsey Simkins from our road safety team worked tirelessly on this project to address two of the UK’s most challenging road safety issues – young drivers and occupational drivers.
“RoSPA is immensely proud that their dedication, and the commitment of our project partners, has been recognised through such a prestigious award. We hope that many employers and young drivers will benefit from the freely-available workshop resources, which can now, quite rightly, be described as ‘award-winning’.”
Since 1987, the awards have given public recognition to those who have improved road safety throughout Britain. Now, they recognise outstanding achievement and innovation worldwide. They are organised and managed by RoadSafe. All awards winners are invited to meet HRH Prince Michael of Kent at a Gala Presentation, held annually in December.