SECAmb urges young to sign up to virtual driving software and save lives
17 July 2013
Prompted by a number of sadly fatal and serious road traffic
collisions across its Sussex, Surrey and Kent region in recent
weeks, South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust
(SECAmb) has teamed up with road safety campaign group Drive IQ to
remind drivers of the need to take extra care on the region’s
Drive IQ is a piece of online software which provides a virtual
driving experience for users. Aimed particularly at young people,
but of benefit to all, the software provides preparation for in-car
lessons with six free e-learning modules to help with driving
awareness, coping with distraction, improving observation and
SECAmb’s Driving Standards Manager Simon Macartney is a former
road policing officer and advanced driving instructor. As well as
supporting the education and driver training of all SECAmb staff he
also works closely with external organisations to promote driving
and road safety.
He said: “We’d really urge young people who are thinking about
learning to drive but also all drivers to make use of this free
software. Many of the A roads in the countryside across our region
present unique risks to road-users and require extreme caution and
“Busy lifestyles, work and peer pressure make us drive faster.
Fatigue, impairment, speed, vehicle maintenance and poor driving
standards all contribute to the collisions we see and attend and
human error can account for almost 99% of all collisions.
“However experienced you are you should take extra care and
‘drive to arrive’, especially when driving round bends and be sure
to keep within not only the posted speed limits, but at a speed
appropriate to the surrounding traffic and environment.”
Drive IQ campaign manager Emma Gardner said: “It’s absolutely
tragic that people are being killed and seriously injured on the
roads across SECAmb’s region. Learning to drive should address
young people’s attitude and behaviour behind the wheel of a car.
Some one in five of new drivers have an accident on our roads
within their first year of driving.
“Teenagers are instinctively ‘invincible’ and science shows that
the frontal lobe of their brains is not fully developed until they
are 24 or 25 years old. This is the part of the brain that controls
such things as risk assessment, danger anticipation and emotions.
We hear so many young drivers say that they really only learn to
drive once they have passed their test, this is a recipe for
disaster. Something needs to change before more lives are lost
Ambulance crews are of course at the front line of all serious
and fatal road collisions to attempt life-saving treatment and
ensure patients have the best possible chance of survival.
SECAmb Paramedic, David Davis added: “I am extremely proud of
the outstanding care that my colleagues along with colleagues from
our fire and rescue services and police provide to the patients
involved in serious road collisions across our region every day.
But, however excellent the response of the emergency services are,
there is no substitute for first having avoided an incident in the
“This is why I, like Emma and everyone at Drive IQ, believe that
education is key and should start young. I’m going to be
encouraging my own childrens’ school to promote the programme and
would particularly urge every teenager to log on via the website.
It could save lives.”
To find out more visit the Drive IQ website at http://www.driveiq.co.uk/ or follow
on Twitter - @drive_iq.