Sixth form student Izzy Pain, 17, will speak from personal experience when she launches a safe driving event at her school tomorrow (11 Feb).
Izzy’s brother Oliver, 18, lost his life when the car he was driving crashed on a country road at Wick in November 2012. His friend Harry Smith, 17, who was a passenger, also died in the crash.
Like Izzy, Oliver and Harry were pupils at Katharine Lady Berkeley’s School in Wotton-under-Edge. They were the first of four former KLB students who were killed in road traffic collisions from 2012-14.
In memory of their former pupils, and to spread a safer driving message to the next generation of drivers, the school has agreed to host Gloucestershire’s latest ‘Drive for Life’ event.
KLB Deputy Head Hannah Khan said,
“Many of our students are either new drivers or will be starting to learn to drive soon. In the light of recent events and the worrying statistics that highlight that many young drivers are involved in car accidents, we want to do all we can to improve our students’ skills, knowledge and awareness.
“Most of all, we want to help them stay safe on the road and drive responsibly and respectfully.”
‘Drive for Life’ is organised by Gloucestershire’s Road Safety Partnership which is made up of the county’s fire and rescue service (GFRS), Gloucestershire County Council, police and police and crime commissioner. Following the successful impact of two similar events at Hartpury College, KLB students are being given a day off studies in the hope they will learn a lesson that could save their lives.
Director of Operations for the Road Safety Partnership, Stewart Edgar, who is also Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service’s Chief Fire Officer, said:
“I’ve been in my job many years and I’ve seen the heartache and tragedies arising from unnecessary risks and poor decision-making caused by inexperience.
“Nobody means to harm or hurt anybody while driving and this day aims to give students the tools to ensure it does not happen to them or their friends.”
“Being confronted with the reality and hearing from those who have lost loved ones can be tough but it’s the most effective way to help students understand the consequences of making poor driving choices.”
Gloucestershire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Martin Surl, who will open the event said,
“I know kids may not find ‘Safe and social driving’ very cool but it is something I care deeply about and is one of the priorities of my police and crime plan.
“I speak from personal experience as both my children were involved in crashes which thankfully they survived but could easily have been much worse. Sadly, people connected with KLB know from personal experience the extent to which things can go wrong. I hope the lessons they learn will help keep them and their friends safe from harm.”
As part of a day of activities and educational workshops, students will learn from members of the emergency services how an investigation develops. Police Family Liaison Officers will talk about the ‘ripple effect’ as they break the news to the victim’s family.
A number of outside organisations will also support the day, including the Institute of Advanced Motoring, the AA, NHS and Stroud District Road Safety Liaison Group.