Students’ crash horror show

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Young drivers in Strabane were yesterday exposed to the graphic details of a horror road crash in an effort to combat road fatalities.

The PSNI hard-hitting ‘Roadsafe Roadshow’ film was shown to students at Strabane Academy on Thursday in an effort to get young drivers to take more care and responsibility on the roads.

Supported by AXA Insurance, and Strabane DPP, the award-winning ‘It Could be You’ roadshow aims to positively influence those drivers who are about to start out behind the wheel.

Area Commander Chief Inspector Andy Lemon said he believes that one of the key areas in reducing the number of deaths and serious injuries on the roads among the youth population is education.

“This is the first time the roadshow has come to Strabane and we are extremely pleased because it has an important message to tell. It is only through educating our young people about the dangers motorists can face on the roads that we can make a difference. I hope that after seeing the roadshow the students realise that they are not indestructible; that they are more vulnerable on the roads and that they must respect the roads and other users.”

The roadshow graphically depicts how a night out can end in tragedy and permanent disability.

The story is told by a police officer, a paramedic, a fire officer, an Accident and Emergency consultant, a representative of a victim support group and the real life story of a young woman, who was paralysed following a horrific collision.

Councillor Thomas Kerrigan, Strabane DPP Chair, added: “I have no doubt that those who attend the roadshow will be shocked, perhaps even horrified by what they see. We make no apology for that. We believe that showing realistically what happens on our roads has a strong impact on the students who attend.”

A spokesperson for AXA, the official sponsors of the Roadsafe Roadshow series, commented: “As one of the largest insurance groups in Europe we deal with hundreds of claims every week as a result of traffic collisions. The effects are well documented - too many people are being killed on our roads or are being injured for life. Young people are particularly over-represented. They must acknowledge that road accidents don’t just happen . . . we hope that young people will learn from this event, think twice about safety.”