Oxford MailCar crash simulation teaches young drivers a vital lesson (From Oxford Mail)

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Car crash simulation teaches young drivers a vital lesson

Oxford Mail: Firefighters from Blue Watch cut the roof off a car during the demonstration to free student Jack Flemon, 19.  Pictures: OX67771 Simon Williams Buy this photo Firefighters from Blue Watch cut the roof off a car during the demonstration to free student Jack Flemon, 19. Pictures: OX67771 Simon Williams

A TEENAGER was cut out of the wreckage of a car crash as firefighters worked to set him free, but it was all in the name of road safety.

Jack Flemon was carried off in a stretcher from the mangled metal after officers from the Blue Watch at Banbury Fire Station cut off the roof of the vehicle.

But the 19-year-old, who attends Banbury and Bicester College, was not a careless driver – he was a volunteer in the car-cut demonstration about road safety.

The Foundation for Learning and Life student from Hardwick said: “There was a fireman with me telling me all the details of what you would do if you were the first aider. They cut the car roof and then they put a neck brace on me and a protector for my face. It was really interesting.

“The neck brace felt tight. The firemen work as a team to get the people out and they looked after me. They were very reassuring and they did it quite quickly.”

Oxford Mail:

Firefighters remove the roof of the car

He added he “hoped to learn to drive” and the session made him think about road safety.

Tuesday’s demonstration at Banbury Fire Station was part of the Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service’s Road Safety Week.

The week targets road users of all ages but the car-cutting exercise was designed to teach young drivers the importance of taking care on the roads.

Across the country, young drivers are involved in one in four fatal and serious crashes, despite only making up one in eight licence holders.

Fire risk manager of Cherwell and West Area Kerry Blair said: “We set up a mock road traffic collision to look at the possible consequences.

“It was to talk through a real life situation that hopefully none of them will go through.

“We simulated a crash and we talked the students through how we would treat him medically. We took off the roof of the car.

“We also touched on general road safety. We spoke with them about pedestrians.

“We did a little bit about cyclists and the need to be safe, be seen and wear helmets.

“The impact of seeing it, hearing it and being that close to it, makes people realise how dangerous some of these accidents are, that it could be them. It is really high impact.”

Oxford Mail:

A neck brace is placed on volunteer Jack Flemon

In 2012 there were 28 fatalities on Oxfordshire’s roads and 279 people suffered serious injuries as a result of collisions.

There were also 1,951 people who suffered a slight injury as a result of a collision.

Oxfordshire County Council’s Fire and Rescue Service’s road safety manager Mick Clarke said: “It is everybody’s responsibility to make our roads safer and I would like to encourage everyone to be aware of the role they play in making our roads safer for all road users.

“It doesn’t matter if it’s a cyclist, a motorcyclist, a driver or a pedestrian – they all should play a significant part in making our roads safer and help to ensure the safety of other road users.”

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