Driver simulator increasing its reach

One of the Young Rotary club's most important local projects has been so successful that it has now expanded across the region.

Driver simulator: Fiona Nash, Keith Duran, Sam Sweaney (sitting), Karen Clark, Trazel Scott, Roz Faulkner, Frank Lincoln and Joe Camilleri.

Driver simulator: Fiona Nash, Keith Duran, Sam Sweaney (sitting), Karen Clark, Trazel Scott, Roz Faulkner, Frank Lincoln and Joe Camilleri.

Rotary's multi-screened Driver Training Simulator can provide drivers of all ages varied lessons under different driving conditions with the aim of improving safety on rural roads.

Local Rotarian Frank Lincoln said the simulator, which has been based at the Young Police Citizens Youth Club will now be on the move to other locations.

"Lessons on the simulator are designed to improve skills of all drivers, young and older," he said.

"We will make the simulator available throughout the entire Cootamundra Local Area Command and go to schools in Canowindra, Blayney, Cowra and Yass.

"A sponsorship deal with Southern Phone has enabled us to make the simulator portable via a trailer."

But school aged drivers are not the only people Rotary want to make the simulator available too.

Recent police figures that show Young to be in the top ten of the worst towns or suburbs for drug driving have encouraged Rotary to expand their program.

"Our next step is to make adults aware that they too can use the simulator and it will prove to be useful for more experienced drivers to brush up on their skills," Mr Lincoln said.

"It will also prove useful for those who may have gotten into trouble with the law to learn about the dangers of drink and drug driving in a safe environment.

"Our training simulates the effects of driving while intoxicated or on drugs to understand the dangers and the effects on a driver while being completely safe, so maybe more people need to use it for the message to get across."

Minister for Regional Development Fiona Nash said the local Rotary and their partners have provided a valuable asset to the Young community.

"When we look at our rural communities and we look at the road toll across the nation, there is no doubt the road toll is higher in rural areas," she said.

"Young people tend to think they are bulletproof and that nothing could happen to them and unfortunately those of us that are older know that is not the case which is why this driver simulator is great because it gives those who use it the opportunity to gain practical skills in a safe environment under supervision."

Rotary will be making the Driver Training Simulator available to adults one night a week starting Wednesday, August 8 from 6 to 8pm at the Young Police Citizens Youth Club.