Road Safety Education In Townsville
Have you heard of RYDA (Rotary Youth Driver Awareness)? It is an award winning road safety education program for senior high school students run by RSE (Road Safety Education Limited).
PBF Australia and RSE have been working together for many years to equip young people with the knowledge to stay safe on our roads. From the 13-16 October PBF’s Injury Prevention Program Presenter, Steve Richter, travelled to Townsville to be a part of three full day programs. In total 406 Townsville high school students attended.
RYDA is a series of practical and powerful workshops that aim to change the way young adults think about road safety. As part of an interactive one-day experience, students experience braking at different speeds, devise travel strategies that will work for them in the real world and get tips from road safety experts on how to protect themselves, their friends and family. Perhaps the most impactful moments come from the personal stories of loss and survival.
In PBF’s session “After The Crash”, students listen to a crash survivor and discuss how one poor choice can change a life forever. PBF’s presenters have a personal understanding of risk-taking behaviours, as each one has incurred a traumatic spinal cord injury caused by a road Incident.
During Steve’s presentation he shared his personal journey, hopes and dreams before the incident, the crash and the factors that lead up to the incident, the ripple effect on his family, friends and community, and the long term losses. The take home message was profound.
“Steve’s presentation did not seek sympathy but exposed students to the reality of life as a paraplegic in very practical terms. His session was extremely popular with the students and delivery style contained humour, and made what could be a very heavy subject one the students felt able to get involved in. As a result they asked difficult questions and got direct answers, being very impressed by Steve’s forthrightness. Above all Steve gave them the realities of the impact of a poor choice and challenged them to make good choices.” Caitlin Scott, RYDA Coordinator Rotary Club of Townsville.
During his week in Townsville Steve was given the opportunity to attend a BBQ and share his story with the Rotary Clubs of Townsville. He also visited one of PBF’s Corporate Members, Tony Ireland Dealership, to give two insightful Tool Box Safety Talks to their workshop, admin and sales staff.