Hackney students get lesson in pre-driving awareness

Forty-Five students from Cardinal Pole School turned up for a special, pre-driving awareness course at Hackney Marshes car park on 2 July, to learn about some of the issues they might encounter as budding new drivers.

The Road Runner Pre-Driving Awareness course was organised by Hackney Council Trading Standards Team, who, in partnership with the Council’s Road Safety Team and Drug Action Team, also the Red Cross, British School of Motoring and the Fire Brigade, provided interactive sessions for the 16 and 17-year-old students to help them prepare to start driving and purchase their first car.

Councillor Alan Laing, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said: “Learning to drive and buying your first car is an exciting time for most young people. Pre-driving awareness lessons helps them to identify and prepare for some of the more serious consequences they might face as new drivers. I am pleased that this collaboration between council services, partners and external organisations is able to provide young people in Hackney with information and advice that will help them to become responsible drivers.”

The students participated in sessions covering resisting peer pressure and the effects of alcohol and drugs on driving performance; the dangers of buying an un-roadworthy vehicle; first aid in the event of a car accident and the consequences of unsafe driving.

One of the highlights of the event was a collision demonstration by officers from Homerton Fire Station, who cut a crash dummy from a car collision scenario, providing commentary and answering questions from students. For two students, Kirstie Philpott and Merzan Roudette, there was an additional highlight; a taster driving lesson with a BSM instructor. The 17-year-olds were both thrilled to get their first try behind the wheel with a leisurely turn around the car park.