Press
The Drive to Ensure team at Frogmore Community College

Markerstudy Group is due to launch Drive-to-Ensure, a campaign to raise awareness of road safety and promote safer driving to young people aged 11 and older.

The group’s in-house Talent Development department teamed up with its own brand, Insurance Factory, to create and deliver the project, and completed two pilot sessions in the South East in June and July.

Anita Gray, Project Manager at Markerstudy, said: “I was shocked to discover that 25,023 people were killed or seriously injured on Great Britain’s roads last year, which was an increase of 2% on 2010 figures and the first annual increase since 1994*. To put it in context, that’s enough people to fill all seats in the auditorium of the Royal Albert Hall nearly five times.

“It’s also a fact that young male drivers are most at risk of being killed, while females are more likely to be killed while travelling as passengers**. It’s clear to us that something needs to be done to educate young people, and before they pass their test. As an insurance provider specialising in cover for young drivers, we have a responsibility to encourage safer driving, especially in this demographic.”

Trials were undertaken at Frogmore Community College in Yateley, with groups of pupils in year 7 and 8. Pete Platt, Assistant Headteacher at Frogmore Community College, described the course as “well-structured...utilising some hard-hitting facts with hands-on activities” and “a must for any personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) education or learning for life programme either at Key Stage 3 or 4”.

Drive-to-Ensure features a presentation with a real-life case study of a mother who lost her 12-year old son to an accident caused by a young driver and a reconstruction of a 16-car motorway crash in foggy conditions. Four principles – Drive Slow, Drive Sober, Drive Silent and Drive Secure are explored using interactive games which have been specifically devised to complement the curriculum.

The activities aim to address issues including speed, drink and drug driving and the use of mobile phones and seatbelts, as well as educating children about car insurance. Participants are asked to ‘pay’ an insurance premium in Drive-to-Ensure banknotes in order to take part, are subject to ‘fines’ for ‘dangerous driving’ and are awarded with ‘no claims discount’ vouchers for completing an exercise ‘safely’.

Pupils demonstrate what they have learnt through a drama workshop and quiz, and certificates are presented to the ‘Safest Team’, ‘Safest Driver’ and ‘Best Team Player’. Mr Platt added: “Our students clearly enjoyed the programme and consolidated old and new knowledge regarding the responsibilities of owning and driving a car.”

Anita concluded: “It’s important children understand the serious message behind the initiative, but we recognised it would have more impact if delivered in a fun way. Our drive to ensure young people’s safety on the roads has well and truly begun and we can’t wait for the official launch!”

Drive-to-Ensure was developed with the support of Kent County Council’s Road Safety team, which assisted with the conceptualisation of the programme. It is due to be rolled out to secondary schools in Kent from Road Safety Week in November.

* Department for Transport, Reported Road Casualties Great Britain: main results 2011.

** Department for Transport, Trends in Fatal Car-occupant Accidents, 2007.

Note to Editors:

The Markerstudy Group includes the insurance arm of the business: Markerstudy Insurance Company Limited and Zenith Insurance plc (acquired in January 2010) plus supporting companies Markerstudy Limited and Zenith Insurance Management UK Limited, providing distribution, claims and administrative support. The following brands operate within the Markerstudy Retail Division: The Insurance Factory, Insurance Factory.com, Insurance Shop, Insurance Factory Commercial, Mobilers and Caterer’s Club, all of which offer value and choice to a wide range of customers.

Wessex Finance, a sub-prime lending and premium finance facility is also an integral part of the Markerstudy Group.

The Markerstudy Group also encompasses Auto Windscreens, which joined the Group in February 2011, and Tonbridge Coachworks Vehicle Repair Group (which incorporates Tonbridge Coachworks, European Automotive Solutions and Canterbury Accident Repair Specialist) acquired in June 2011.

For further information, contact:

Lizzy Crofts

Group PR Executive, Markerstudy Group

E: lcrofts@markerstudy.com

T: 0844 854 8713

W: www.markerstudy.com