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Young driver initiative will continue to make an #Impact during 2019

A campaign aimed at young drivers will make its first visit of 2019 next week – sharing road safety messages with students at East Norfolk Sixth Form College in Gorleston.

The #Impact campaign – the initiative of Norfolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner Lorne Green - has been touring schools and colleges across the county since it was launched two years ago.

Since then, more than 4,700 young people at 42 events have been reached through the initiative which is actively supported by Norfolk Constabulary, Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service and the East of England Ambulance Service.

PCC Lorne Green said: “I take very seriously the pledge I have made to do all I can to prevent young people from being seriously injured or killed on our roads. I am delighted that my #Impact initiative is back on the road for 2019.

“The fact we have already managed to reach so many young people across Norfolk is simply fantastic. I thank the #Impact team for its continued dedication to educating young people about the dangers of the fatal four - whether it be drink and drug driving, not wearing a seatbelt, using a mobile phone behind the wheel or excess speeding.”

The #Impact presentation starts with a video of Thomas Semmons, from Scarning near Dereham, who was seriously injured after losing control of his car in bad weather on the B1145 in Norfolk.

Thomas talks about his experience and the effect the crash had, not only on him but also on his loved ones. His car (photo attached) also tours with the campaign – showing the very real impact of what can happen when things go wrong behind the wheel.

Students then get the opportunity to observe and take part in a ‘crashed car’ demonstration – an insight into what is involved for our emergency services in freeing a driver from a vehicle – before being asked to consider and make their own pledge to being safe on Norfolk’s roads.

Inspector Jon Chapman from Norfolk Constabulary said: “Young drivers are disproportionately represented in casualty statistics which is why it’s so important we educate young people about the risks on the road.  

“Education is key to this and what #Impact delivers is a powerful and thought-provoking presentation showing the stark reality of what can happen if you get it wrong.  

“We’re committed to working with our partners to improve road safety and the mock collision display helps to focus the attention of students.” 

East Norfolk Principal Dr Catherine Richards said: “As a College, we have a responsibility to our students and community to raise awareness and understanding of many issues, including road safety. Young drivers form one of the main risk groups in road-related incidents, where people are killed or seriously injured, so it’s important our young people are aware of the dangers.  

“The #Impact roadshow is a great opportunity for our students to interact with the emergency services, gain a unique insight into the really important work they do and see first-hand the consequences of being reckless behind the wheel.  

“This event, combined with the range of opportunities we offer as a college, including Public Services, the Duke of Edinburgh Awards and being the only Combined Cadet Force in the east of the county, is also helping to ensure we prepare those students with an interest in the Armed and Emergency Services sectors to get the widest range of experiences.  

“The roadshow will be a valuable insight for everyone involved and the students and staff are looking forward to taking part.”