Young drivers offered road safety advice

A PREVIOUSLY cancelled road safety event in Hawick for young drivers has been re-arranged for tomorrow (Friday) evening, writes Kenny Paterson.

The Scottish Borders Road Safety Working Group organised a series of roadshows last month, but its trip to Hawick was postponed due to adverse weather.

One in five fatal or serious road crashes in the region involves a driver under the age of 25, says the group, and in almost two thirds of these accidents the young driver is the primary cause of the crash.

A large number of the incidents involved no other vehicle and they are predominantly the result of loss of control by the young driver – usually on a bend on a rural road.

The roadshows, which are open to 17 to 25-year-olds, will be attended by the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM), which is offering free demonstration drives.

There are also competitions and prizes to be won, including fuel vouchers.

Drivers can take part in the Show and Shine competition to recognise the best prepared vehicle of the night, and experts from Lothian and Borders Police, Scottish Borders Council, Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service will be in attendance to offer advice.

And John Cleland of Cleland’s Galashiels is providing the opportunity for young people to take the advanced driving test. He previously agreed to refund the first 100 young drivers who successfully sit the course and test.

Inspector John Scott, from the Scottish Borders Safer Communities Partnership, said: “The young drivers events are a great opportunity for those that have recently passed their test to become safer and more skilled as drivers. This is crucial in the Borders, where we have a vast network of rural roads where driving conditions constantly change.

“Many young drivers learn the hard way by being involved in a car crash and too many parents in the Borders see the consequences, which can last a lifetime.

“I would welcome all young drivers to the event to see what is on offer.”

The road safety event takes place from 7.30pm to 9.30pm in the Haugh car park.