Shell Malaysia has announced that Team Salvus from Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) has been crowned national champions of this year’s #ShellSelamatSampai Varsity Challenge. The annual inter-varsity challenge, which was introduced in 2017, is aimed at empowering tertiary education students help find solutions in mitigating road safety issues.

The winning team, made up of Nurul Faqihah Hambali, Kiang Fei Yi, Siti Aishah Husna, Mas Athirah Mohd Hisban and Nurul Syamilah Azman, took the gong with their project called ‘Anti-Drunk and Sleep Detector (ADS)’. The project saw the creation of a device that identifies alcohol-impaired drivers or drivers who are dozing off at the wheel by detecting the alcohol and oxygen levels of a driver to indicate if he/she is in the right condition to drive.

“First of all, we want to thank Shell Malaysia for introducing the NXplorers initiative, which exposed us to new thinking tools and problem-solving methodologies, that played an important role in the implementation of our project. Our dream is to see our invention being used by Malaysians towards creating a safer journey for everyone on the road. Like our name “Salvus,” which means safe, we hope that with the technology available, we can all come together to achieve zero road accidents,” said the members of the team.

Team Salvus was one of the five finalists in this year’s event, competing against students from Universiti Malaysia Sarawak, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Universiti Utara Malaysia, Universiti Teknikal Malaysia Melaka and Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman. Prior to the final round, UPM had six teams in the Top 20 round of the competition.

At the Top 20 stage, Shell provided each team with RM1,000 to transform their ideas into working prototypes within eight weeks, following which the work was presented in the form of a formal report and a video summary. A panel of judges then selected the top five teams for the final round.

“Road safety is a concern in Malaysia and many other countries in the world. The World Health Organization records approximately 1.3 million fatalities each year due to road traffic crashes. At Shell, we are seeking to reduce road accidents in the country by empowering our youth to use technology to design innovative interventions to prevent road related accidents,” shared Ivan Tan, chairman of Shell Malaysia.

Since it began, the Shell Varsity Challenge has gained participation from universities throughout Malaysia and has introduced many innovative project prototypes aimed at helping improve road safety conditions.