Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Britain's Horrendous Child Death and Injury Rates Prompt New Film for Road Safety Week

Autonomous Vehicles and Connected Vehicles Explained as 39 a Day Hurt
Shipping News Feature

UK – Autonomous vehicles are now a fact of life and their spread over the coming decade must surely now be undoubted. In the eyes of road safety charity Brake, the technology presents a hitherto unknown set of risks and benefits, particularly for the younger generation, so the organisation has taken steps to address these on the eve of UK Road Safety Week (starting Monday November 18th).

Brake has teamed up with TV and radio science presenter and YouTube educator Greg Foot to create a brand new short film for primary schools. The seven-minute film, called ‘Our future journeys: safer by design’, aims to help children understand how connected and autonomous vehicles work and why safe vehicles are so important for a world where everyone can move in a safe and healthy way.

The film will be shown to thousands of schoolchildren in assemblies and lessons throughout the week, with this year’s theme being ‘Step up for Safe Streets’ focusing on how design led solutions can prevent people dying or being seriously injured on the roads. Last year 14,254 children were killed or injured on British roads. That’s an average of 39 children, more than a classroom full, dying or suffering injuries as a result of road crashes every day.

Our future journeys: safer by design is presented by Greg Foot who has been bringing science to life through entertaining shows and live performances all over the world for the past decade. As well as hosting his own series on BBC Radio 4 and BBC Three and CBBC, he has helped children understand science by appearing regularly on Blue Peter, hosting school talks and making popular videos on YouTube.

The short film also features six children from Hotham Primary School in Putney, London, who talk to Greg about their views on vehicle technology and what they want to keep them safe on roads. The film covers aspects of future technology, such as cars that will drive themselves, and includes a live demonstration of how autonomous emergency braking (AEB) works to prevent a collision. Filming took place at the Science Museum in London and at the HORIBA MIRA technology centre in Nuneaton.

In keeping with the theme of ‘Step up for Safe Streets’, the film will help children talk to grown-ups about how they can be road safety leaders and do their bit for safer roads. Brake has also produced a series of supporting materials, including assembly slides, lesson plans and activity sheets that are all available for free from the website.

Road Safety Week, coordinated by Brake with support from the Department for Transport and headline sponsors Kwik Fit and Specsavers, inspires teachers, youth workers and early-learning educators to engage pupils of all ages in lessons and activities that encourage safe and responsible road use. It’s also a fantastic opportunity for schools to send important messages about road safety home to parents and the wider community.

In 2018, an estimated 2.1 million people were involved with Road Safety Week activities, with the majority taking place within school settings. To view those who have registered for Road Safety Week 2019, take a look at Brake’s interactive map. Educators can get immediate access to the free online action pack, which includes the film Our future journeys: safer by design.

Photo: Hotham Primary School Year Six pupils with science presenter Greg Foot.