A specially modified car crash simulator – the first of its kind in Northern Ireland – has been launched by Justice Minister David Ford and Environment Minister Mark H Durkan.
Ballymoney Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP), on behalf of Ballymoney, Limavady, Coleraine and Moyle PCSPs, received £35,000 from the Department of Justice’s Asset Recovery Community Scheme, to design and build a car crash simulator to help address inconsiderate and dangerous driving by young people in the area. The project is called ‘2 Fast 2 Soon’.
The simulator will start with a car journey on a typical Northern Ireland rural road. Through its high quality sound system, hydraulics, DVD player and smoke and light system, young drivers get to experience being in a crash and learn about the devastating consequences of driving irresponsibly including the potential for injury and death.
The PSNI will take the car to 21 post-primary schools in the PCSP areas to educate young drivers about road safety.
Justice Minister David Ford said, “By driving dangerously and irresponsibly not only are young people putting their lives at risk but their actions often intimidate and frighten others; this type of anti-social behaviour leads to a real fear within communities.
“I hope that the young people who experience this simulator will learn about what happens when they don’t take care on the roads and will change their behaviour. My message to them today is to respect their community and not let their actions of driving too fast, end their lives, too soon.”
Minister Mark H Durkan of the Department of the Environment said, “I welcome this imaginative initiative, which will highlight to young drivers the devastating impacts and consequences of dangerous and irresponsible driving. Young drivers are vastly overrepresented when it comes to deaths and serious injuries on our roads. In fact young men are four times more likely to be killed and seven times more likely to be the driver who kills when involved in a fatal road traffic collision. Every death on our roads is one death too many. For that reason my Department launched the Share the Road to Zero earlier this year. The ‘2 Fast 2 Soon’ initiative fits well with our efforts as a community to work towards zero deaths on our roads.”