Road safety

Film screening shares crucial road safety message after teenager Ruthin’s tragic death > Denbighshire News

Job : Sun 17 Jul 2022

A film telling the story of a local teenager who was tragically killed in an accident was shown at a special event in Ruthin.

Olivia’s Story shares a powerful road safety message by telling the story of Olivia Alkir, 17, from the city, who was killed on the B5105 in June 2019 following a collision caused by two young racing drivers .

The special screening of the film at the Old Courthouse, hosted by North Wales Police and Crime Panel Deputy Chairman Pat Astbury, took place on Tuesday

Among those involved in promoting the road safety message were Olivia’s visiting relatives from Turkey.

Olivia was traveling in a Ford Fiesta with two other girls when the driver lost control on a 72mph corner and hit an oncoming car head-on.

The 17-year-old driver had ignored calls to slow down. Olivia, who was in the back seat, suffered serious internal injuries from the impact and tragically died at the scene. Two of his friends suffered life-changing injuries.

Olivia’s mother and father, Jo and Mesut Alkir, were present in the audience, alongside relatives of the Alkirs.

Also in attendance were local residents, children from local schools and representatives from North Wales Police, North Wales Fire and Rescue Service and Denbighshire County Council.

The show was used to support Mr and Mrs Alkirs’ call for a black box to be fitted to every young person’s car, to monitor driving and try to prevent such tragedies.

Together with Olivia’s parents, family and friends, the film and school support lessons premiered at the end of March this year.

Since the launch, lessons have been delivered to all secondary schools in North Wales and from September the scheme will be available nationally via SchoolBeat.

North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Andy Dunbobbin said: ‘Road safety is a hugely important issue for all of us in the public service and I am determined that North Wales should have some of the safest roads in the UK.

“No one who has come into contact with Olivia’s story and the message behind it cannot fail to have been moved by the dedication of Olivia’s parents, Mesut and Jo, and their family, to keep her memory alive and to ensure that no other family experiences the pain they have felt since Olivia’s tragic death.

“I would like to pay tribute to them, their courage and their determination to see change happen.”

Sergeant Beth Jones, North Wales Police, said: “Our target audience for the project, from the start, was 14 to 20 year olds in educational institutions and colleges.

“Our hope for the future is that it will be deployed in youth clubs, young farmers clubs, police cadets and any other environment that attracts young people of the target age group, so that they understand the message to stay safe on the road.

“It is important to realize that this is only the beginning and that it is vital that the project remains sustainable and has a lasting impact.”

Stuart Millington, of the North Wales Fire and Rescue Service, said: ‘The North Wales Fire and Rescue Service fully endorses the requirement to install black boxes in all vehicles for young drivers.

“The film is both poignant and powerful and if it is effective in changing the behaviors of young drivers, we will have Olivia and her legacy to thank.”

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