Guest blog - Parv Walling of ADINJC

Parv Walling of ADINJC gives an ADIs view on some of the topics raised this month...

Not so smart? Grave concerns have continued to swirl around smart motorways and now even more so with direct Ministerial involvement. How are you dispelling the latest fears from your students about driving on them when there appear to be contradictions in what is being said? My understanding was always that motorways are the safest roads to be travelling on. Yet when returning from Walsall I witnessed a broken down car and couple of people stranded on the ‘hard shoulder’ of a smart motorway early evening and it made me go cold. I don’t think they even realised the risks they faced by being there, and they certainly didn’t appear to know what to do. What are you teaching about smart motorways and the risk of breakdowns?

Fighting with trains? Level crossing near misses caught on camera have been released by Translink.  As trainers, I’m sure we’ve all had students who think they can ‘beat the barrier’ but what really shocked me were the people with pushchairs who were just running through with the barriers still closing. The thought of those children being pushed through at speed will learn that it’s ok to make a run for it. Other impressionable people may see that behaviour and think ‘oh yes, why don’t I try that?’ I wonder if those parents with pushchairs also run red traffic lights when driving? What do you teach about the dangers of the many different types of rail crossings and what examples do you think are appropriate for showing to your students?

Speed limits not targets? Finally, should we be encouraging the reduction of speed limits on rural roads or should we be influencing drivers to make safer driving speed decisions on all road types and at all times? This is especially pertinent when we could even be seeing increased speed limits on motorways. Speed can be such an emotive topic especially when your students talk to their friends about how they won’t necessarily drive the way they were taught after the driving test. How are you tackling conversations about the pro’s and con’s of speed? Here are 3 survivor ‘hit and run’ stories which some readers may find upsetting. 



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