With the road safety project, OKRA aims to give a large group of elderly people the opportunity to refresh their traffic knowledge on a relatively short term.
Reflection on the own traffic participation and on concrete traffic issues will be treated during these sessions. The participants in the OKRA traffic classes will get a better view of the (new) traffic rules and will learn to adapt their behaviour to new circumstances. This way, the number of fatalities among the elderly will be further reduced.
Brief presentation of the initiative:
- Different initiatives will take place during the period from September 2010 until December 2011 in 100 Flemish municipalities and the Brussels Capital Region. To ensure a balanced dispersion, we strive to have an average of 20 projects per province.
- In total a few hundred initiatives will be organised at the municipal level. A reasonable dispersion is targeted. The recruitment of participants will be done by the regions and in general.
- On average, we are expecting some 100 participants per course. In this way, approximately 10,000 elderly people will be reached that effectively will follow the full program (4 half days).
The following methodology is developed:
- A PowerPoint presentation with lots of animation to support the lecture series of four sessions. The presentations will be systematically adjusted to the most recent version of the traffic rules.
- The retired teachers are experts in the matter and respond practically and with experience to the everyday traffic situations. Anecdotes and elements from their own professional experience are of particular importance.
- The presentations contain numerous photographs of traffic situations in the immediate environment. This helps to increase the interest and recognisability for the participants.
- Participants are given the possibility to write down their questions. The questions are then grouped and treated during the last session.
- The teachers also make (limited) use of the documentation and DVDs of the Belgian Road Safety Institute.
- The attendance of the participants is registered on participation cards and the certificate, delivered after attending all four sessions, is an additional motivation for the participants.
- The series of classes are open to all senior citizens (also non-members of OKRA) and we cooperate with local police and the municipality or city.
The course series include four sessions, each with a duration of about 2 hours. The following topics are included:
- The alphabet of the road traffic code
What is my knowledge of the road traffic code, the road signs and rules? During this section the participants learn about the types of traffic signs, the signs of traffic controllers, priority to the right, behaviour rules in traffic.
- The vulnerable road user
My behaviour as a vulnerable road user in traffic (pedestrian and cyclist), my place on the public road, calculating risks, cycling in group, the blind spot problem...
- My car, my freedom
In this section, the individual documents, compulsory and non-compulsory documents and equipment aboard the vehicle are discussed (with a special focus on the European Accident Report Form). A police control and an accident are simulated.
- Together on the road
How do I behave as a car driver, as a cyclist and as a pedestrian in the traffic? In this section, we focus on the defensive behaviour in traffic, serious offenses, the wearing of seatbelts, adapted speed, braking distances, reaction times, turning left and right, stopping and parking.