Crucial Crew in Torfaen
Around 1000 pupils from schools across Torfaen recently booked in to visit the TA Centre in Cwmbran to take part in this year’s health, safety and responsibility extravaganza, Crucial Crew.
Across the eight day event a total of 12 agencies delivered information sessions to Year 6 pupils from across the borough. The road safety session focussed on the importance of wearing a seatbelt on every journey.
Twenty six schools attended the event and of all the 916 children surveyed, a surprisingly high proportion (502) reported they did not always wear their seatbelt, that’s 55%.
Responses from ten schools showed that over 60% of their Year 6 pupils did not always belt up, three of these showed a non-compliance rate of over 70%. Excuses varied from – not bothering on a short journey, to having too many people in the car for the number of seatbelts.
In the session, Kate Kerr, the Road Safety Officer for Torfaen discussed the importance of using seatbelts with each of the groups, reminding the children that crashes might occur any time, even on a short journey, and that we never know when it could happen to us. Also discussed was the fact that seatbelts save lives as well as saving people from injuries. The session explored the importance of using seatbelts correctly, highlighting the dangers of wearing their seatbelt under their arm.
Using the DfT’s Julie advert helped the pupils to realise how vital it is that ALL vehicle occupants belt up, as they are not only putting themselves in danger, but also risking the safety of everyone else in the car.
At the end of the session each group was asked if they would now wear their seatbelt for every journey. 99% agreed they would, with just five children of the 916 not agreeing to always belt up.
The surprisingly high baseline figure shows how vital this input is and the necessity for Crucial Crew to continue year on year.
Each school will now be contacted with the results for their Year 6 pupils. Schools will also be offered follow up sessions with younger children, particularly looking at issues around the importance of using booster seats. Often children are too keen to get off their booster seats at a young age without checking their height, putting themselves in danger by using a seatbelt that does not yet fit properly.
Kate Kerr said, “Carrying out this survey highlights to me how vital it is to keep pushing the importance of seatbelts and how the message needs to reach all children, not just those in Year 6”
For further information about road safety in Torfaen please contact Kate Kerr, details can be found here