uhertsHertfordshire firefighters from Hatfield and Potters Bar have given students at the University of Hertfordshire a lesson in fire and driving safety at the start of the new term.

Attending the university’s annual Housing Fair, an event aimed at first year students looking to rent their first home, crews provided advice about fire safety in student accommodation, and testing smoke alarms, promoting the free home fire safety checks.

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Richard Thake, Cabinet Member for Community Safety, said: “If students are worried about the safety of their accommodation, free home fire safety checks are available, carried out by firefighters from their local station. This assesses all areas of accident and fire risk in the home, and can give students peace of mind when living away from home for the first time.

Encouraging the importance of driving safely, crews also took along the road traffic safety car – a modified Ford Focus which acts as a crash simulator or ‘crash car’ to powerfully bring home the risks of driving dangerously.

Stationed outside the Forum, the crash car was used to educate young drivers, who are at particular risk of being involved in a crash, about the dangers of speeding, drink driving, not wearing a seatbelt and driving while distracted, for example when using a mobile phone.

Cllr Thake added: "Young drivers remain one of our most vulnerable groups of road users, with dozens of 17 to 24 year olds being seriously injured on our roads every year. Events like this help us engage with young drivers and help prevent accidents happening in the first place."

For more information visit: www.hertsdirect.org/firesafety