The Rotary Youth Driver Awareness (RYDA) program had another successful turnout last month.
Students from Canowindra, Cowra, Grenfell and Boorowa attended the day which Rotarian Peter Chivers described as, “a showcase of the privileges, risks and responsibilities of motoring as a driver or a passenger”.
Mr Chivers said the students go through the physics of breaking, listen to a survivors recount, a session with police on penalties, fines and requirements of drivers and a session with Lloyd Garratt discussing road rage.
This years guest speaker was Jeff Kinney who spoke about a motorcycle accident he had been involved in and that no mater what drivers did accidents could happen.
“I got involved with it (the RYDA program) through Liz Reynolds at Headspace, I said to her that I wish I could warn people that bikes and cars aren’t exactly the nicest things when you have an accident,” he said.
“She put me in contact with Peter Chivers before Christmas last year and we sorted it out for me to come up here and speak.”
Jeff said RYDA was important in keeping young road users safe.
“Education is important, if 20 people can take away from today that accidents are bad maybe I should think what I’m doing through, that’s 20 less people you’re going to lower the risk of having a bad accident for,” he said.
“The more people I can warn about my accident the more people won’t have it happen to them,” he said.
Peter Chivers said that rotary had already seen a drop in the fatalities of the age group they targeted.
“It’s a proven fact that taking into account the increased number of vehicles on the road the death toll has dropped, somewhere in the order of 18 per cent,” he said.
“In the 17 to 25-year-old age group, the group we aim at, the accident and fatality rate has dropped by 47 per cent.”
“Now that’s due to a lot of things, it’s to do with better roads, the graduated licensing system, more police, better ambulance response and education, education must be part of it, it’s the role we fill.
“If you have but half of one percent success, it’s a big save,” he said.
Mr Chivers is keen to hold another RYDA program later in the year targeting the year group below Year 11 and 12 to further increase the educational impact they can have with young drivers.