Petron has kicked off its Road Safety Program for the fifth year running. Together with the Malaysia road safety department (JKJR), the oil company will organise the event – which was initiated in 2014 to educate the youth on safety driving – in seven local universities involving approximately 5,000 students.

“Our objective is to educate and inculcate, in the public, good driving habits and important road safety skills especially among the younger generation,” said Petron head for corporate safety, security, health and environment Lokman Hani.

Interestingly, the approach this year incorporates a competition theme called ‘Amazing Race Game’, where students get to learn about road safety in a more entertaining and interactive setting. The activities include four ‘road safety pit stops’, such as answering road safety quizzes, identifying faulty tyres, interpreting road safety signs and completing parking tests, as well as a slalom course for motorcycles. The first three teams to complete the challenge in the shortest time will win the race.

“We are thrilled to introduce this new approach, which goes beyond just classroom learning. Through this, we believe that we will be able to reach more students and effectively teach them how to have safer journeys, prevent accidents and ultimately save more lives,” Lokman added.

He also said road safety has always been a key priority for the ministry of transport, and this commitment is undermined by the five strategic pillars of Malaysia’s Road Safety Plan 2014-2020. This also falls in line with global efforts to reduce road accident fatalities by 50% by 2020.

“Malaysia has recorded an average of 6,800 deaths due to road traffic accidents annually for the past 10 years. Although the number was reduced from 7,152 deaths in 2016 to 6,740 in 2017, much still needs to be done. Study has shown that the main cause of road accidents is attributed by the bad attitude of our drivers,” explained Lokman.

In 2017, Petron’s Road Safety Program reached 4,665 university students from seven local universities. Since 2014, it has reached over 8,000 students. The advocacy programme covers safe driving habits such as strict observance of traffic laws, use of seatbelts, wearing proper helmet for motorcyclists, and more.