A new road safety workshop, aimed at rural young people, is being launched during Road Safety Week (19-25 November 2023) by The National Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs (NFYFC).
More than half of fatal crashes in Britain occur on rural roads, according to the road safety charity Brake, and per mile travelled, rural roads are the most dangerous roads for all kinds of road user.
With most members of Young Farmers’ Clubs living in rural locations, the organisation is hoping the Drive it Home workshop will help to reduce the number of incidents on rural roads.
The awareness session, which has been developed with Leicestershire and Rutland’s Rural Policing Team and Leicestershire County Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs (FYFC) with input from Leicestershire Fire Service, focuses on the four main causes of people being killed or seriously injured on roads.
Known by the emergency services as the Fatal Four, they include:
Drive it Home, which can be delivered during a club meeting and lasts around one and a half hours, was originally launched in 2012 as part of a YFC rural road safety campaign. More than 10 years on, the module has now been renewed to address the key issues facing rural road users today.
The module, which is suitable for 10-to-28 year olds, helps young people think about the preparations needed for driving. It includes an interactive exercise about the items people should keep in their car, such as a first aid kit, a warning triangle, and a blanket.
The course also gives guidance to young people on what to do if you’re first on the scene of a road traffic incident.
NFYFC Chair of Council Rosie Bennett said:
“This course could be a life-saver and we’re urging all YFCs to include the Drive it Home module on their club programmes, as it’s an issue that affects everyone living in rural communities.
“NFYFC is grateful for the support of the Leicestershire Rural Police Team and Leicestershire County Federation of YFC in developing this course. I hope it has an impact on YFC members and encourages safer driving on rural roads.”
Leicestershire Police Officer Rob Cross, who is also the current Vice President of Leicestershire & Rutland YFC and a former County Chair, worked with the county to re-develop the course.
Rob also helped to deliver the pilot course to his former club Lutterworth YFC. He said:
“I am proud to have helped develop this course with Leicestershire and Rutland Federation of Young Farmers’ Clubs, which I hope will be a prevention tool and stop rural young people from becoming a statistic.
“I’d much rather be involved in talking to YFCs than having to pick up the pieces of a fatal road traffic collision and speaking to their bereaved family and friends.
“The fatal four are a big issue for us on rural roads across the UK and I hope this course will help young people make some informed decisions.”
The pilot for the new course was delivered to Lutterworth YFC members and the county are delighted that the course can now be delivered to all clubs throughout the national federation.
Emma Lovegrove, County Organiser for Leicestershire & Rutland FYFC, said:
“Over the years we have lost members due to road traffic accidents and we were keen to create a course that could benefit Leicestershire members and others across England and Wales. We’re delighted that NFYFC has decided to roll the course out nationally.
“Rural young people between 16 and 29 are at the highest risk of dying from a road traffic accident. If we can save one life in each county, then this module has worked, and we’ve made a difference.”
The Drive it Home module is part of NFYFC’s bespoke suite of training modules, which have been developed to deliver during club meetings by YFC Trainers.