More than 30 licensed drivers from Ford’s corporate partners recently took part in the Driving Skills For Life (DSFL) programme, which is part of Ford’s global safe driver training. This is part of the effort by Ford and its sole local distribution partner, Sime Darby Auto ConneXion (SDAC), to promote safe driving behavior and road safety awareness in Malaysia.
The drivers who signed up for DSFL comprised mainly of employees of telecommunications and utilities companies. The half-day workshop was held at the Malaysia Agro Exposition Park Serdang (MAEPS).
“Road safety is an important topic and we are proud to partner with Ford who has the know-how, to promote a safer driving behaviour among Malaysia motorists. Ford Driving Skills for Life Programme provides useful tools and resources to help driver understand many unpredictable scenarios that could happen on the road while equipping them with knowledge to tackle the situations accordingly,” said Syed Ahmad Muzri Syed Faiz, Managing Director, Sime Darby Auto ConneXion.
Malaysia has one of the highest vehicle ownership rates in the region, as well as high traffic accident rates. This suggests that awareness of basic road safety is still lacking among Malaysian drivers. According to data from the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (MIROS), more than 43 percent of Malaysian drivers use their mobile phones while driving¹ and only less than 10% of rear passengers wear the seat belt².
The DSFL workshop was conducted free-of-charge and addressed various driver risks with training focused on four main areas:
- Distractions – Making smart decisions behind the wheel to limit distractions and staying focused on the task of driving
- Hazard recognition – How to scan for trouble when approaching intersections, and safety zones
- Speed and space management – Learning how to adjust speed to maintain space around, ahead and behind a vehicle while avoiding being rear-ended
- Vehicle’s handling – Understanding the vehicle’s capability and learning to better control the vehicle by leveraging on its safety features such as Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB), Forward Collision Warning and Lane Departure Warning.
The workshop was a mix of classroom and practical training sessions, and also featured the Ranger pick-up truck similarly used by these drivers on a daily basis, to relate and simulate close to real-life, hands-on driving experience.
An emphasis on the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol or medication was also incorporated into the programme. This includes having participants wear specially designed goggles that help simulate the experience of driving while movement, coordination and alertness are impaired.
Globally, the Ford DSFL programme is active in 35 countries and is now in its 16th successful year of training licensed drivers of all ages. To-date, the program has trained more than 1,000 individuals in safe driving practices in Malaysia.
¹ “Driving And Mobile Phone Use” https://www.miros.gov.my/xs/page.php?s=risalah-fakta
² “Status of 5 years implementation of Rear Seatbelt Regulations” https://www.miros.gov.my/xs/page.php?s=risalah-fakta