Improving school crossings and educating young drivers will be among the areas tackled by new team in Bideford.

A new road safety group has been set up to tackle problem spots in Torridge – including school crossings and young drivers.

The Torridge Road Safety group will include members of the police and fire teams, as well as Highways and Devon County Council.

Graham Rooke, fire station manager, said one of the key areas to look at would be improving safety at school crossings.

He said: “There is a past history of incidents in the local area; there has been a number of schoolchildren being knocked over.

“At West Croft there have been several incidents in the last 12 months alone of young children involved in some sort of road traffic collision.

“This group will be looking at how we can work with schools and reduce the risk through educating children as well as physical measures.”

The group will be looking to bring The Honest Truth into schools, which teaches children bad driving habits using animals and a catchy song.

Inspector Phil Gray, Torridge sector inspector, added: “The best route to educating the parents we’ve found is through the children.

“All of the schools we have spoken to so far are really keen to get involved.”

Another area the group will focus on is young drivers, including showing them a car involved in a fatal collision.

Police and fire services will also be setting up driving simulators which mimic the effects of driving while drunk or on drugs.

Mr Rooke added: “The main aim is to educate drivers to those risks in the hope that better knowledge will improve their driving abilities and reduce the number of accidents on our local roads.”

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