A road safety officer from Hertfordshire has been acclaimed for his dedication and hard work after reaching 40 years in the job.
Ian Powell, who joined Hertfordshire County Council in 1976, has been commended for the way he has helped the county maintain its proactive response to road safety over the last four decades.
Ian’s first post was road safety officer for the East Herts area where his duties ranged from promoting the Green Cross Code to primary years pupils, to pre-driver and secondary educational projects.
In his early years he featured in a film called ‘A Matter of Attitude’, which showed him conducting a cycling proficiency course to highlight the differing attitudes of road users towards each other – still a very relevant issue today.
In 1986 Hertfordshire became the first county to promote the use of car seats for children. With the help of sponsorship from local businesses, arranged by Ian, 500 seats were donated to three of the county’s maternity units.
Ian met Princess Diana when she launched the scheme at the QE11 hospital in Welwyn Garden City – and shortly after this it became a legal requirement to use a child car seat.
Ian then became more involved in driver training. In the early 1990s he established the county’s first ‘driver training team’ which delivered driver and management programmes for individuals and businesses.
Ian became the Institute of Road Safety Officers’ (IRSO) contact for driver training and represented IRSO (now Road Safety GB Academy) on the first ‘Pass Plus’ board, helping achieve an initial take-up rate of 11%.
After 15 years of membership, Ian became an IRSO ‘Fellow’ and sat on its safety advisory panel for 10 years, helping councils and businesses manage their occupational driver safety schemes and policies.
In 1996 Hertfordshire became the third county in the UK to introduce driver retraining courses. Ian was a founder member of ANDISP (Association of National Driver Intervention Service Providers), subsequently renamed NADIP (National Association of Driver Intervention Providers). Ian was NADIP national secretary for six years and is currently chairman.
The world of road safety has changed greatly over the years, and Ian has been at the forefront of helping Hertfordshire to maintain its proactive response. His dedication and hard work have kept the roads of Hertfordshire safer. Here’s to the next 40 years!