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Ford’s Driving Skills for Life Program Gears Up for Easter

 

04 April 2023

Ford’s Driving Skills for Life Program Gears Up for Easter

 

04 April 2023

Ford driving skills for life program gears up for easter

PRETORIA, South Africa, 04 April 2023 – Ford’s Driving Skills for Life (DSFL) free driver training program helps to raise the standard of driving in the country and promote road safety. This year is no exception with its first public event coinciding with the Easter holidays – a notoriously dangerous period on South African roads. By equipping motorists with the necessary skills and awareness, many of these accidents can be avoided to ensure a safe and enjoyable holiday for all.
 

Launched in South Africa in 2010, Ford DSFL has trained more than 1.5 million drivers in 46 countries to date, with an investment of more than R1-billion over 19 years. The training is conducted with a hands-on curriculum and the comprehensive program is part of Ford’s commitment to promoting road safety.

Despite a welcome decrease in road fatalities during 2022, motorists must remain vigilant. According to the latest government statistics, a total of 1 451 people lost their lives on the country's roads during the 2022 festive season, representing a 13.9% decrease compared to the previous period.

“Safety continues to be a key priority for Ford and providing campaigns such as DSFL can only help reduce the number of road accidents, and increase drivers’ knowledge and confidence on the road,” says Derek Kirkby, Training Director at MasterDrive. “We believe that DSFL contributes to making the roads a safer place, especially during peak holiday seasons.”

DSFL campaigns have created awareness regarding child car seat safety, hijack extraction, passenger safety, distracted driving, Euro NCAP performance, as well as demonstrating the dangers of drinking and driving – the latter done by using DSFL’s ‘Drunk Goggles’ which allows motorists to experience the alarming effects of impaired vision and judgement in a safe manner.

The training focuses on five primary driving skills which are regularly modernised to keep up with new vehicle safety systems and emerging dangers on the road. These include, hazard recognition, vehicle handling, speed management and space management, as well as distracted and impaired driving.

1. Hazard Recognition
In Hazard Recognition, the driver learns how to scan for trouble, especially during busy situations such as entering and turning at an intersection. Key safety zones are identified, and drivers are taught how to minimise distractions so as not to feel overwhelmed.
 

2. Vehicle Handling
Vehicle handling covers learning to control a vehicle’s balance and the forces acting upon it. Drivers will experience the effect of acceleration and braking on a vehicle’s stability, and driving techniques designed to transition between these smoothly. This helps to maintain good grip and traction. DSFL also teaches drivers how to recover from a skid and the contrasting dynamics between front- and rear-wheel drive vehicles.
 

3. Space Management
South Africa’s increasingly busy road network makes space management a valuable defence against road accidents. Being aware of the space around the vehicle will lessen the chance of being in a rear-end collision or having a head-on accident.
 

4. Speed Management
Excessive speed can endanger not only yourself, but also those around you. DSFL instructors will help demonstrate these dangerous and reckless driving habits while also showing how active driving aids fitted to the vehicle can be complemented by emergency driving techniques.
 

5. Distracted and Impaired Driving
One of the leading causes of collisions is drunk driving, which has a dramatic impact on the driver’s concentration levels, overall awareness, depth perception and peripheral vision, reaction times and reflexes. To prove the point, the DSFL team uses drunk goggles that simulate the effects of driving under the influence of alcohol.
 

Using a cellphone while driving has rapidly become one of the main contributors to traffic accidents, and the Ford DSFL program highlights the shocking reality of how texting while driving costs lives.

Experts at Ford’s DSFL program would like to offer the following additional tips for a safer holiday this year on SA roads:
 

For Pedestrians

  • Walk on a sidewalk or path. If one is not available, walk on the shoulder, facing traffic.
  • Stay alert – don’t be distracted by electronic devices, including smart phones, tablets, and other devices that take your eyes (and ears) off the road.
  • Be cautious night and day when sharing the road with vehicles. Never assume a driver sees you as they approach.
  • Be predictable. Cross streets at zebra crossings or intersections when possible. 
  • If a zebra crossing or intersection is not available, locate a well-lit area, wait for a gap in traffic that allows you enough time to cross safely, and continue to watch for traffic as you cross.
  • Be visible. Wear bright clothing during the day and wear reflective materials or carry a flashlight at night.
  • Avoid alcohol and drug use – they impair your judgement and coordination.

For Drivers

  • Motorists need to be vigilant when driving in areas of pedestrian activity. Pedestrians may not be walking where they should be or may be difficult to see – especially in poorly lit conditions.
  • Always stop for pedestrians at a zebra crossing.
  • Never pass vehicles stopped at zebra crossings because they may have stopped to allow pedestrians to cross the street.
  • Stay focused and slow down where children may be present, like parks and neighbourhoods. 
  • Check the condition of your vehicle before embarking on any trips, including examining the tyres, lights and windscreen wipers. If in doubt, visit your local dealer or fitment centre for a vehicle safety inspection.
  • When driving long distances, take a break at least every two hours.

“With the excitement of the holiday season on everyone’s mind, one must remain vigilant and careful as the roads become busier and potentially more dangerous. By adhering to these key Driving Skills For Life principles, you can improve your safety on the road, as well as for those around you,” concludes Kirkby. 

PRETORIA, South Africa, 04 April 2023 – Ford’s Driving Skills for Life (DSFL) free driver training program helps to raise the standard of driving in the country and promote road safety. This year is no exception with its first public event coinciding with the Easter holidays – a notoriously dangerous period on South African roads. By equipping motorists with the necessary skills and awareness, many of these accidents can be avoided to ensure a safe and enjoyable holiday for all.
 

Launched in South Africa in 2010, Ford DSFL has trained more than 1.5 million drivers in 46 countries to date, with an investment of more than R1-billion over 19 years. The training is conducted with a hands-on curriculum and the comprehensive program is part of Ford’s commitment to promoting road safety.

Despite a welcome decrease in road fatalities during 2022, motorists must remain vigilant. According to the latest government statistics, a total of 1 451 people lost their lives on the country's roads during the 2022 festive season, representing a 13.9% decrease compared to the previous period.

“Safety continues to be a key priority for Ford and providing campaigns such as DSFL can only help reduce the number of road accidents, and increase drivers’ knowledge and confidence on the road,” says Derek Kirkby, Training Director at MasterDrive. “We believe that DSFL contributes to making the roads a safer place, especially during peak holiday seasons.”

DSFL campaigns have created awareness regarding child car seat safety, hijack extraction, passenger safety, distracted driving, Euro NCAP performance, as well as demonstrating the dangers of drinking and driving – the latter done by using DSFL’s ‘Drunk Goggles’ which allows motorists to experience the alarming effects of impaired vision and judgement in a safe manner.

The training focuses on five primary driving skills which are regularly modernised to keep up with new vehicle safety systems and emerging dangers on the road. These include, hazard recognition, vehicle handling, speed management and space management, as well as distracted and impaired driving.

1. Hazard Recognition
In Hazard Recognition, the driver learns how to scan for trouble, especially during busy situations such as entering and turning at an intersection. Key safety zones are identified, and drivers are taught how to minimise distractions so as not to feel overwhelmed.
 

2. Vehicle Handling
Vehicle handling covers learning to control a vehicle’s balance and the forces acting upon it. Drivers will experience the effect of acceleration and braking on a vehicle’s stability, and driving techniques designed to transition between these smoothly. This helps to maintain good grip and traction. DSFL also teaches drivers how to recover from a skid and the contrasting dynamics between front- and rear-wheel drive vehicles.
 

3. Space Management
South Africa’s increasingly busy road network makes space management a valuable defence against road accidents. Being aware of the space around the vehicle will lessen the chance of being in a rear-end collision or having a head-on accident.
 

4. Speed Management
Excessive speed can endanger not only yourself, but also those around you. DSFL instructors will help demonstrate these dangerous and reckless driving habits while also showing how active driving aids fitted to the vehicle can be complemented by emergency driving techniques.
 

5. Distracted and Impaired Driving
One of the leading causes of collisions is drunk driving, which has a dramatic impact on the driver’s concentration levels, overall awareness, depth perception and peripheral vision, reaction times and reflexes. To prove the point, the DSFL team uses drunk goggles that simulate the effects of driving under the influence of alcohol.
 

Using a cellphone while driving has rapidly become one of the main contributors to traffic accidents, and the Ford DSFL program highlights the shocking reality of how texting while driving costs lives.

Experts at Ford’s DSFL program would like to offer the following additional tips for a safer holiday this year on SA roads:
 

For Pedestrians

  • Walk on a sidewalk or path. If one is not available, walk on the shoulder, facing traffic.
  • Stay alert – don’t be distracted by electronic devices, including smart phones, tablets, and other devices that take your eyes (and ears) off the road.
  • Be cautious night and day when sharing the road with vehicles. Never assume a driver sees you as they approach.
  • Be predictable. Cross streets at zebra crossings or intersections when possible.
  • If a zebra crossing or intersection is not available, locate a well-lit area, wait for a gap in traffic that allows you enough time to cross safely, and continue to watch for traffic as you cross.
  • Be visible. Wear bright clothing during the day and wear reflective materials or carry a flashlight at night.
  • Avoid alcohol and drug use – they impair your judgement and coordination.

For Drivers

  • Motorists need to be vigilant when driving in areas of pedestrian activity. Pedestrians may not be walking where they should be or may be difficult to see – especially in poorly lit conditions.
  • Always stop for pedestrians at a zebra crossing.
  • Never pass vehicles stopped at zebra crossings because they may have stopped to allow pedestrians to cross the street.
  • Stay focused and slow down where children may be present, like parks and neighbourhoods.
  • Check the condition of your vehicle before embarking on any trips, including examining the tyres, lights and windscreen wipers. If in doubt, visit your local dealer or fitment centre for a vehicle safety inspection.
  • When driving long distances, take a break at least every two hours.

“With the excitement of the holiday season on everyone’s mind, one must remain vigilant and careful as the roads become busier and potentially more dangerous. By adhering to these key Driving Skills For Life principles, you can improve your safety on the road, as well as for those around you,” concludes Kirkby. 

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