he Rotary Clubs of Geraldton are pleased to announce they have received $4,716.42 in grant funding from the Road Trauma Trust Account, through the Road Safety Commission. These funds supported the running of their Rotary WA Driver Education Program held at Towns Football Club, Thursday 12th November 2020 and the upcoming program to be held on Thursday 11th March 2021. 200 Year 10-11 students from Champion Bay Senior High School, Geraldton Grammar School, Geraldton Senior College and Morawa District High School, teachers and volunteers attended the days program.
Rotary Clubs of Geraldton and partners WA Police have been successful in running RWADE, Rotary WA Driver Education here in the Midwest for five years. Rotary engages community and stakeholders by providing a key program for Year 10 -11 Midwest students prior to them obtaining their drivers licenses to help reduce this tragic loss of young lives. The project addresses issues specific to the region as well as those groups most at risk including: Students, Community and stakeholders who can all benefit by the continued running of this most important program RWADE:
The aim of the event is to successfully influence the attitude of young people just before they learn to drive as the key strategy. Young drivers are the largest category killed or seriously injured on WA roads. “It is not about the power of the car but the attitude of the driver.” Why is Rotary so passionate about this program? Because we care about the lives of young people!
While texting, speed and drink driving still remain an extremely high level of priority of road safety, another factor has emerged with astounding factual evidence, that of Fatigue. Fatigue-related crashes remain a major concern for the government and other road safety authorities across Australia.
In 2019, in Western Australia, 12% of fatalities were fatigue-related crashes. The majority of these fatalities (74%) occurred in regional WA. Overall, fatigue accounts for more than 20-30% of all fatal crashes and serious injuries on Australian roads. In 2008, the State Government released its 12-year road safety strategy, Towards Zero, which set out the ambitious target of 11,000 fewer people killed or seriously injured (KSI) by 2020, which is a 40% reduction from the baseline period of 2005-2007.
Six interactive sessions engage a number of stakeholders and the community to encourage a greater recognition of shared responsibility for road safety and road trauma prevention. The event, now into its 5th year is shared with WA Police, St John Ambulance / First Responder & Basic First Aid, Midwest Auto Group with” My Wheels” , "Distractions, Hazards & Risks", Geraldton Fire Station" and “Stopping Distances” conducted by Keen Bros Driving School. The students are all given a coloured wristband with the wording “My Life My Choice”.
Rotary Club of Geraldton President Karen Godfrey said “This program has been running since 2015 so this applied funding is for added sustainable assets that will be used for future RWADE programs in Geraldton, allowing the project to continue to run even more smoothly with these additions.
A new addition covered by the grant was using Eppys Removals to pick up and drop back all the equipment proving an invaluable inclusion saving time and man hours to ensure the smooth running and fine tuning of RWADE. The Road Safety Commission have supported us since day one, this financial support means we can continue running a much-needed program and see our young people grow and be successful leaders in our community.
Thank you sincerely to our Midwest Schools, RWADE presenters, supporters and volunteers for making this event another huge success.