A campaign to prevent the deaths of young road users on Lancashire’s roads has now reached more than 50,000 would-be drivers across the county.
The Wasted Lives initiative was launched in April 2007 following the death of Matthew Hannon, by the Lancashire Road Safety Partnership working with the Lancashire Telegraph and the county’s fire and rescue service.
22-year-old Matthew died following a collision while racing through Blackburn, after which his best friend Steve Hayhurst, 23, admitted causing death by dangerous driving.
Wasted Lives is an award winning young driver education programme targeting young drivers and their passengers. Delivered by a team of facilitators and fire officers, the session aims to challenge beliefs resulting in safer attitudes towards risk taking behaviours on the roads.
Road safety professionals take the message to schools and colleges across Lancashire, backed by the testimony of families directly affected by such tragedies.
Fred Jackson, Lancashire Fire Authority’s road safety champion, said: “Since 2010 the programme has influenced the numbers of those killed or seriously injured within the 17 to 25 year-old age group, with a reduction of 37%.”
Work has continued to widen the scope of the scheme, with presentations now given to members of the armed forces. Recently around 400 members of the 2nd Battallion of the Duke of Lancaster’s Regiment, which includes young recruits from East Lancashire, watched the presentation.