Bristol Student Lucinda Larnach has developed an acronym to help drivers stay safe on the roads.
In 2014, a family friend was injured in a road traffic accident, leaving him with a broken leg and kneecap, in need of physiotherapy and unable to attend university.
Affected by his story, the 18-year-old has teamed up with Fixers to create a video urging young people to complete a ‘personal MOT’ before driving, to ensure they are safe on the roads.
‘When you drive, you are operating something that can have a devastating effect,’ says Lucinda.
‘At 17, we aren’t legally adults, but we are able to have this responsibility and it shouldn’t be taken lightly.
‘My project is a campaign to raise awareness of the additional factors affecting our psychological approach to driving, and how these can alter our mind-set before operating a vehicle.’
To stay safe, Lucinda has come up with her own ‘MOT’ acronym for young road users to follow, consisting of ‘Mind-set’, ‘Obstructions’ and ‘Tell someone’.
‘Mind-set’ relates to self-awareness, and ensuring you are safe to drive in your current condition.
‘Obstructions’ encompasses the need to be aware of the actions of other drivers, and ‘Tell someone’ highlights the importance of communicating your intentions and your route to friends and family.
‘I wanted my MOT to be like a Mantra,’ she explains. ‘It needed to be something easy to condense and convey, and using the acronym of something so relevant to drivers was important to achieving that.
‘I think it is especially important to young drivers, because of the pressures and all the other things going on inside your head at 17.’
Lucinda will start formal driving lessons in the New Year, and believes her experience doing the project will benefit her when she takes to the roads.
‘Filming the video and speaking to a bus driver, a pilot and a driving instructor about their attitudes to their jobs has made me feel more at rest about learning to drive,’ she explained.
‘Hearing their professional opinions on the importance of remaining stable while in control of a vehicle has given me a new perspective that I hope I will carry with me throughout my driving journey.’
Lucinda’s project was funded by the Road Safety Trust.