This year, the youngest road users were once again the focus of MAN Truck & Bus’ road safety campaign, which was launched in 2020 and has now been continued. Experts from local road safety associations and MAN ProfiDrive visited elementary schools in the Munich area and showed more than 2,000 schoolchildren what is important when driving a bus and, in particular, the dangers posed by the blind spot. They were accompanied by an MAN Lion’s City bus equipped with smart safety technology. Maybe there is an opportunity for someone to show similar leadership in Ireland.
Every year, children are involved in road traffic accidents. Particularly dangerous situations often arise at intersections when a driver overlooks a child on foot, on a scooter, or on a bicycle while turning. “The consequences of blind spot or turning accidents in particular are usually severe,” says MAN ProfiDrive expert Heinrich Degenhart, adding: “That’s why our road safety campaign this year focused on blind spot training.” More than 2,000 children from grades 1 to 4 learned during the campaign what they should look out for when crossing intersections and where blind spots can occur.
“We also used a triangular tarp to show the children what the blind spot of a bus is. It’s important that the students themselves realize how limited the driver’s visibility can be and that entire school classes can disappear in the blind spot,” says Degenhart. For this reason, a MAN Lion’s City 12 G was also on tour. “The students’ attention is higher and what they learn is more sustainable when they can experience things hands-on.” It also gave the children hands-on practice in waiting for the bus, lining up properly, and what to look for when the bus arrives at the stop.
Road safety campaign inspires teachers and students
MAN Truck & Bus launched its road safety campaign for schoolchildren back in 2020 – and has now continued it. The aim was and is to make a significant contribution to ensuring that the youngest road users are as safe as possible on the roads. “Assuming social responsibility and standing up for the safety of all road users is a matter of course for us and a genuine concern,” says Rudi Kuchta, Head of Business Unit Bus at MAN Truck & Bus. In order to show children what they need to pay attention to, especially when driving a bus, road safety experts together with trainers from the training provider MAN ProfiDrive organized a total of 13 events at numerous elementary schools in the Munich area over the past few months – and generated enthusiasm among pupils and teachers alike: “The ‘Blind Spot’ campaign organized by the ‘Verkehrswacht München’ road safety association in cooperation with MAN is an extremely important experience, especially for our elementary school students, to make them aware of the dangers in road traffic,” says Lisa Alonso Sánchez, a teacher at the elementary school in Haar.
Innovative technology from MAN supports drivers in urban traffic
To make road traffic as safe as possible, however, MAN is not “only” focusing on further education and training for drivers, passengers, cyclists and pedestrians, but also on innovative technology in particular. “Further increasing the safety of all road users is what drives us on and around. That’s why we put our experience and expertise significantly into the development of innovative assistance systems,” says Kuchta. Drivers in urban traffic receive special support from the active warning turning assistant with pedestrian detection – an effective measure against accidents caused by blind spots. Front and side cameras automatically monitor the surroundings and warn the driver visually and acoustically of dangerous situations and collisions.