Hertfordshire teenagers urged to ‘drive safe and stay alive’ on the county’s roads

PC Bob Heley, George Atkinson, Big Ted and Inspector, Phil Bloor

PC Bob Heley, George Atkinson, Big Ted and Inspector, Phil Bloor - Credit: Archant

More than 2,000 teenagers from Stevenage and North Herts have been learning grim lessons about road safety this week from people who really know how devastating a road accident can be.

George Atkinson

George Atkinson - Credit: Archant

Stevenage’s Gordon Craig Theatre welcomed pupils from 11 secondary schools for the Learn2Live roadshow which aims to make young drivers think about the consequences of their actions behind the wheel.

Year 11 and 12 students heard from police offices, firefighters, drivers and parents who have had to deal with the consequences of death on the roads at an event organised by Herts County Council on behalf of the county’s road safety partnership.

Police family liaison officer PC Bob Heley spoke about his work with the force, and how he has to knock on family’s doors and break the news that a loved one has died.

He said: “When you turn up in a white hat and yellow jacket at 3am, everyone knows it’s not good news. I have been involved with this talk for three years now and the aim is not to terrify the students, but to remind them of the responsibility that sits on their shoulders.”

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George Atkinson was the last person to speak to the teenagers.

His daughter Livia died after being hit by car when she was on the way to a ballet class.

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He told the students: “No parent ever gets over the loss of a child. We can cobble a life together but it is not the same.

“There is no winner in a car crash, it will be your worst nightmare if you are lucky enough to survive. Choose wisely, drive safely, stay alive.”

For more information visit www.learn-2-live.org.uk.

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