Road safety is very important for people of all ages, but teens face a special set of challenges when driving. Students at Stredná Priemyselná Skola Myjava in Slovakia wanted to help their peers keep safe on the road!
Road safety is a serious matter. High school students at Stredná Priemyselná Skola Myjava found out just how serious it is when they suffered the loss of a classmate due to a road accident. They wanted to prevent such a tragedy ever happening within their school again. They planned to design an initiative to help achieve this aim, and began by having a discussion that focused on teenagers´ driving behavior.
They are familiar with the common high risk behaviors common among teens, like showing off and fooling around in front of friends when they are behind the wheel. They also talked about how students drink alcohol at discos and parties and then drive their cars – often with passengers. Another risky behavior is not concentrating while driving because of listening to the music and - most notably - using mobile phones.
All of these behaviors are dangerous for any driver, but teens are especially susceptible due to their lack of driving experience, and increased likelihood of panicking in troublesome road situations. That’s why the students wanted to target their initiative towards teens, focusing on the importance of adhering to the driving instructor’s lessons and advice, and not breaking regulations and rules of the road when driving.
The students prepared a short questionnaire concerning road safety in their area and distributed it among their schoolmates. It asked them about difficult road situations they have encountered as drivers or passengers, like when black ice in the winter makes the car or bus skid.
They also asked for the cooperation and advice of local driving school instructors from the driving school A+K Myjava, who provided useful driving and road safety information.
The most important objective of the students´ initiative was to address people of their own age group and influence them to acquire and maintain good driving behavior. This was the basis of their key message: listen well to the driving instructor and always do as he says!
To get the message across, the students created a video about road safety, which was shown to all of the students at their school. They also published an article about the project and the students’ activities in their school magazine. Finally, they created a presentation, and showed all of the final work of the project to the local driving school A+K Myjava for their use as a teaching resource.