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PCC hopes to steer young drivers in the right direction with Road Safety Event
Bedfordshire Police and Crime Commissioner, Kathryn Holloway, has been working alongside her office to improve road safety awareness amongst drivers aged 17 to 25.

With 117 road collisions involving young drivers last year in Bedfordshire, and car accidents being one of the biggest causes of death for young people, road safety has been made a priority this autumn by the PCC who joined new students as part of the University of Bedfordshire’s Freshers’ Week to highlight the issue of safe driving and hand out free breathalysers.

“It appals me that one of the greatest threats to life for under 25s is not illness, but death in an accident on the roads. My office has got together with the University of Bedfordshire, sixth form colleges and schools to offer young drivers a real insight into how they can be safer on Bedfordshire’s roads,” said Commissioner Holloway.

“If speaking to students at the University and at the Road Safety Event saves one life or prevents one crash, it will have been entirely worthwhile,” added the PCC.

The Bedfordshire Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner has been working with young drivers by carrying out a short survey to find out their driving habits, experiences as both a passenger and driver and to gain an insight as to how road safety can be improved.

If you are aged between 17 and 25 please take 5 minutes to complete our Young Drivers Road Safety Survey.

The data from the survey will help inform and shape a one day road safety event for young drivers on 22 November 2017. Taking part during National Road Safety Week ‘Speed Down – Save Lives’ (an initiative from road safety charity Brake), students from across Bedfordshire will be invited to be part of a day which will outline the dangers to drivers, and include helpful talks and demonstrations from Bedfordshire Police, Bedfordshire Fire and Rescue and The Road Victims Trust, as well as local and national partners who are dedicated to improving road safety.  

The OPCC snap-shot survey carried out during Freshers’ Week revealed that many students were unaware that using their phone in any capacity whilst operating a vehicle was illegal.

29% of students surveyed during Freshers’ Week said they had used their phone whilst driving. Whilst 37% admitted to having driven or been driven by someone after having an alcoholic drink.

Accompanying the PCC and members of the OPCC during Freshers’ Week was Bedfordshire Police’s University Liaison Officer - PC Craig Pearce - who offered students road safety advice.

“I’m really proud to have taken on this role as the student population is integral to Bedfordshire, and that’s why the role is so important. I have engaged and met with a lot of new students who are young drivers on the roads.

“After handing out free breathalysers with the Commissioner, I really hope young drivers think before getting into a car after having a drink or with a driver who has had a drink. My message is simple, don’t be pressured into it by any of your friends and leave your mobile phones out of reach so you won’t be tempted to use them,” said PC Pearce.