Front Star driving school in partnership with the Police Traffic Control and Testing Unit conducted a field exercise for trainee drivers to assess their level of competence and qualification ahead of the school’s maiden graduation slated for next Saturday.
The exercise was conducted in line with the Traffic Act Regulations which oblige driving schools to invite the Police to supervise and recommend trainees that are fit for driving.
Upon qualification all the 14 students who participated in the exercise are expected to graduate and be issued their driving licenses and certificates.
Speaking on the sidelines of the exercise, chief inspector of police and principal testing officer Abdouile Badjie said the exercise is meant to prove the students’ level of understanding of basic skills required for them to drive.
“If we are not satisfied with the performance of any trainee that means they are not good enough to graduate, they are asked to go back to the school and do more training,” Badjie explained.
He said Gambians should do away with conventional methods of driving where “people would hire anyone to train them to drive and after being able to move a vehicle they think they are ok” which is “not enough.”
“It is true that there is a high number of road accidents but most of them are caused by people who go on the road, pick somebody who does not even know the code signs or the basics of driving to teach them without standard training.”
Inspector Badjie called on citizens to make best use of driving schools to get all the skills that are required before using the high ways as the only means to minimize accidents.
Front Star manager for social services and head of driving school Antoinette Mendy said the company was established by a dynamic young Gambian who is committed to supporting the growing youthful population and contributing to national development.
“We have seen that youths are most vulnerable to road accidents on a daily basis, most of which could be avoided. We want to break that chain and help everybody to achieve our goal in road safety. The youths are the future of the country and they cannot be avoided in this crusade,” Mendy added.
Amadou Jallow, a veteran training instructor, said eighty-five percent of road accidents that occurred in the country are avoidable if the drivers’ involved know what to do.
He said the government should make it a priority to ensure that anyone willing to drive in the country goes through driving schools.
Front Star admin manager, Modou Lamin Badjie said the company came to realise that it has a responsibility to contribute to road safety as part of its social services.
“We want to reduce the number of accidents by training competent drivers since we came to realise that the frequent accidents that are happening in town are as a result of incompetence and that brought the idea of establishing the driving school. That is why we came on board to sensitise people, train people and to send the message across that every Gambian to become a competent driver must go to a driving school,” the former KMC ward councilor said.
Front Star Star company was first established as an estate provider before widening its scope into other services like construction, installation, drilling, provision of domestic workers, drivers, cooks and restaurant services.