A MULTI-FACETED road safety awareness and education campaign, aimed at reducing road accidents, injuries and fatalities, has been launched.
Focused on driver training, pedestrian visibility and child-seat safety, Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa, with the Automobile Association (AA) and other partners, wants people to be safe on the roads this festive season.
Dr Casper Kruger, managing director of Ford Motor Company’s Sub-Saharan Africa region, said road safety affects everyone.
“Issues such as a lack of driver training, not using safety devices such as seatbelts and child car seats, as well as the numbers of unroadworthy vehicles and unlicensed drivers mean that about 15 000 people die on our roads each year.”
Ford is actively involved in driver training through its Driving Skills for Life programme. Driving skills is a free, comprehensive course that trains drivers in responsible and safe driving techniques. The course includes hazards, vehicle handling as well as speed and space management. It addresses distracted driving, from using cellphones behind the wheel, and impaired driving caused by drugs or alcohol.
National visibility campaignfor pedestrians
Ford, AA, FIA and Michelin have started a high-profile national road safety campaign called #ISeeYou.
#ISeeYou, which is linked to Ford’s Driving Skills for Life programme, is focused specifically on pedestrian visibility.
According to the AA, one in three fatalities on South African roads are pedestrians. Statistics from the Road Management Corporation show 5 410 pedestrians died on our roads in 2016. This represents 38% of all deaths on Mzansi roads last year – pedestrians are the most vulnerable group of road users!
Pedestrians are particularly vulnerable when visibility is impaired – at dawn or dusk, or when there’s smoke, dust or fog in the air.
The campaign urges pedestrians to wear high visibility clothing or reflective sashes. As part of the initial phase of the campaign, 14 000 sashes were distributed to pedestrians through activations across the country.
The campaign has already participated at 28 schools and 20 Ford dealerships.