Brain damage woman supports campaign

A woman who suffered brain damage in a car crash, aged 20, is supporting a campaign to get teenagers to drive safely.

Shelley Halsey suffered her injuries three years ago, and now has problems with her speech.  She's one of a number of people who are going to speak to teenagers in Milton Keynes on Thursday 18 & Friday 19 November 2010 at a Thames Valley Police event called Safe Drive Stay Alive.

Teenagers attending the presentation get to watch a Casualty-style video depicting the lead up to and aftermath of a car crash.  At various points in the film, paramedics and other people involved in the aftermath step onto the stage to address the audience directly.

Safe Drive Stay Alive has now been running for five years in the Thames Valley, and this 50,000 people have now watched the presentation.

The production features a film produced by, and starring students from, Reading University. It features a group of young people on a night out whose car is involved in a crash.  The production explores the circumstances that can lead to a crash and the consequences that follow. Members of the emergency services step onto the stage at specific times in the film and talk about their real-life experiences and what would be happening.

Watch Shelley Halsey and her mum Jane talk about their experiences

Superintendent Rob Povey, head of Roads Policing for Thames Valley Police, said "Safe Drive Stay Alive is about making young people aware of the many dangers they face and the risk they can present to both themselves and others.

"Road death is the biggest killer of young people in the UK. The campaign is about trying to make young people aware of the impact their actions behind the wheel on themselves, their friends, family and also the emergency services that deal with them."

Students are also able to share their thoughts and experiences of the event with organisers and each other through the Safe Drive Stay Alive Facebook group and Twitter feed.

More than two people die and around 180 are injured in crashes on roads in the Thames Valley each week. The Safe Drive Stay Alive campaign is run by Thames Valley Police, Thames Valley Safer Roads Partnership, three fire and rescue services, South Central Ambulance NHS Trust, hospital accident and emergency staff and road safety officers from councils across the region.