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Safety group ensuring rural school pupils can be seen and inspire adults to do the same

BANFF AND DISTRICT COMMUNITY SAFETY GROUP CHAIRMAN MICHAEL MENARD (L) AND VICE CHAIRMAN MARK FINDLATER WITH KING EDWARD  PRIMARY P7 PUPILS AND HEAD TEACHER AUDREY CLARK DISPLAYING THE RELECTIVE ARMBANDS AND BADGES.
BANFF AND DISTRICT COMMUNITY SAFETY GROUP CHAIRMAN MICHAEL MENARD (L) AND VICE CHAIRMAN MARK FINDLATER WITH KING EDWARD PRIMARY P7 PUPILS AND HEAD TEACHER AUDREY CLARK DISPLAYING THE RELECTIVE ARMBANDS AND BADGES.

Youngsters at a rural primary school have been given fluorescent goodies by a safety group encouraging them all to be easily seen.

The Banff and District Safety Group are trying to get youngsters to wear colourful, florescent and reflective items of clothing to make them safer, especially in the darker months.

Yesterday, each child at King Edward School was given a pack with day-glow slap bracelets, stickers and key rings.


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The pupils were also told to make sure their friends and family were going out wearing more than just black clothing.

Local bus driver and chairman of the safety group Richard Menard believes the main aim is to start making it “cool” to be visible.

He said: “About five years ago our vice-chairman’s wife started the initiative to make sure children had access to these florescent items.

“We’ve had support from Stagecoach and various other groups so we’re trying to get the message out there that you have to be seen to be safe.

“As a bus driver, especially in the winter months and along these country roads, you’re basically on top of people sometimes before you see them.

“So many accidents could be prevented if people were wearing something they could be seen in.

“It’s a big problem.

“This isn’t just for kids either. Other generations not wearing anything reflective makes it hard for drivers to see them at all.

“I’ve seen many close calls as everyone is just wearing black.

“Giving them these things will make them easier to see which is imperative.”

Pupils from schools across Banff and the surrounding area will be visited by the safety group with packs.

King Edward head teacher Audrey Clark said she hates the road the school is based on so anything which helps increase pupil safety is a bonus.

She said: “We’re very grateful and it’s been good to see the children all get a pack to share with their friends and family.

“It has made them more aware of needing to be seen and they’re now going around with these bright and reflective stickers on their jackets and bags.”

Vice-chairman Mark Findlater greeted the pupils with his dog, whose collar is also florescent yellow.

“Don’t let anyone tell you that you don’t look cool because if you’re not wearing something bright then you won’t be seen to look cool anyway,” he told the children.

“A few years ago we gave out reflective reusable bags at bus stops and that helped so now we’re going to the children to see if they can inspire the adults to be seen and be safe.”

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