RAF Boulmer’s Mechanical Transport (MT) Section delivered several events during this year’s Road Safety Week with the aim of improving awareness throughout the Station and local community.
On the opening day, Halfords delivered a workshop in the Boulmer Beacon, providing advice and guidance on the correct fitting and placement of child car seats. This was followed by free bicycle checks. Both services proved to be extremely valuable and were very well received by the Longhoughton community.
Instructors from the MT Section visited Longhoughton primary school to talk to children from pupils from Reception and Years 1 and 2 about the importance in road safety. The children took part in several fun activities centred round a “Green Cross Code holding hands” theme, followed by a look around some of RAF Boulmers military vehicles, including the RAF Police van.
Throughout the week RAF Boulmer personnel took part in several vehicle safety awareness activities. These included: driving an articulated Large Goods Vehicle under instruction, experiencing the dangers associated with many blind spots whilst operating these vehicles. Wearing special ‘beer’ goggles, which simulated the effects of drunk driving, personnel tried to manoeuvre a car through a course without making contact with the markers and later, without the goggles, brushed up on their parallel and reverse parking skills.
On the final day a simulated crash demonstration highlighted the problems that our emergency services experience when dealing with the aftermath of a road traffic collision.
RAF Boulmer’s Blue Watch firefighters, cut free a ‘casualty’ from a crashed car, Paul Sparrow, from the North East Ambulance Service and Community First Responder, gave personnel an insight into medical procedures during and after a collision. PC Jamie Blythe from Northumbria Police gave an interesting brief on the common causes of road traffic collisions and a personal insight into the harrowing experience of having to inform next of kin when a loved one has died.
Wing Commander Gareth Taylor, Officer Commanding Support Wing, said:
“Given that road traffic accidents account for nearly 2,000 deaths and over 200,000 casualties per year in the UK, the road safety week at RAF Boulmer was a great way of ensuring everyone in the RAF family understands how they can become a responsible road user; whether drivers, passengers, pedestrians, cyclists, or even horse riders.
I am, therefore, hugely grateful to the MT section, and in particular Sergeant Keirnan and the external agencies that supported, for providing such an interactive and informative programme of activities. It certainly made me re-think decisions I have been taking based on out of date advice, for example with regards the security of my children in our family car, as well as the manner I precede past a heavy goods vehicle.”
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