Teenagers at an Aberdeenshire school put their jotters aside yesterday and learned how to stay safe behind the wheel.
Retired north-east policeman, Alan Brown, spearheaded the first day of a new road safety project run by DAB Plus Driver Training.
Mr Brown has 30 years experience as a police officer in the north-east and spent years in the roads policing department, before becoming a training development manager for the driver training organisation.
A group of 97 sixth year pupils were hand-picked for the education day, which featured a hard-hitting video showing the wider impact of a crash, a drink-driving exercise involving “beer goggles” and first-aid training.
Speaking after yesterday’s session Mr Brown said: “It has been a really excellent day, and there has been a lot of good feedback from the students taking part.
“We started off with a video showing the consequences of a fatal crash – the impact on the wider family and the direct impact on people’s lives.
“That came as quite a sobering message to them.”
He said his past experiences had demonstrated the importance of his new role.
Mr Brown added: “Nationally, this age group features disproportionately in the numbers of crashes.
“I retired just before Christmas after 30 years on the job and I have had to attend the crashes.
“I have had to deal with the carnage, I have had to knock on the doors of loved ones, it is not a nice thing to have to do.”
Ellon Academy’s head girl Chatel Burnett, 17, who has had about 10 driving lessons, said it had been a useful day.
“It showed the difference when you’re driving with instructors and when friends are there,” she said.
“This gave you a real insight into what driving with your friends will be like.”