With a number of heartbreaking hijack stories making the news recently, the matter of driver skill and awareness has once again been given attention.
Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa (FMCSA) has a team of certified professionals who train drivers around the country as part of its Driving Skills For Life (DSFL) programme. While many tertiary driving courses focus on performance dynamics at race tracks, the DSFL instructors impart invaluable knowledge for everyday driving scenarios.
These include training on conserving fuel through smarter driving, advice on how to better read the flow of traffic, and other, practical money-saving tips. DSFL also focusses extensively on safety. This involves not only collision avoidance techniques, but also pointers for driver awareness in situations such as hijackings.
“It’s no secret that women are easy targets when driving alone, however these tips apply to all drivers,” says Maja Smith, Product Communications Manager at FMCSA. “Recent events in the news have highlighted the importance of equipping drivers with the requisite skills.”
Some useful tips that you can follow include:
- Remaining alert to surroundings at all times – especially at intersections and in suburbs
- Being on the lookout for suspicious activities and vehicles
- Preparing to take evasive action
- Maintaining ample following distances
- Allowing for escape routes
DSFL instructors also have information for drivers who find themselves in dangerous situations involving a hijacker:
- Remain calm
- Do not make sudden gestures
- Avoid eye contact – except to identify
- Comply with hijacker’s demands
- Assist children to get out of the vehicle
- Move away slowly
For more information on Driving Skills for Life visit www.ford.co.za