In line with its commitment to the cause of Road Safety, Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) today announced the implementation of two impactful road safety programs, namely the Toyota Safety Education Program (TSEP) and the Toyota Hackathon, aimed to educate, create awareness, instil a sense of responsibility, and empower the youths to become advocates for road safety. While TSEP is an interactive program targeting school children from 5th – 9th grades, educating them on the importance of road safety through a phase-wise approach, Toyota Hackathon provides a platform for 11th – 12th graders to develop effectiveroad safety solutions.
Both these road safety programs offered by Toyota (TSEP was launched in 2007 and Hackathon during 2018) have successfully reached over 790,000 school children to date, bringing about a positive change in the behaviour as road users. This year, TSEP will be implemented across Bangalore & nearby districts, focusing to cover more than 20,000 students across 40+ schools. The learning modules under the TSEP program covers interactive content and assessment, club activities for experiential learning, intra-school club activity sessions and conducting annual event to encourage children to demonstrate their understanding about the road safety, thereby helping in creating ‘Road Safety Ambassadors’. The program’s unique ‘Child to Community’ approach aims to influence road safety practices within local communities and become a flagship project striving towards zero fatalities.
Simultaneously, the Toyota Hackathon, initiated in 2018, encourages children to become critical thinkers and solution providers for modern-day road safety challenges, while inspiring the young minds to learn from the innovations and incorporate solutions towards promoting road safety. For the academic year 2023-24, Toyota Hackathon is focusing to cover youths from the
existing TSEP implementing schools & pre-university colleges, targeting around 100 institutes, both from Bangalore and nearby districts. The Toyota Hackathon broadly includes online and offline evaluation by conducting tests, screening & shortlisting of teams, building implementable road safety solutions with mentors, also incubation support for best innovations and participation of school children in 24 hours hackathon.
Some of the major causes of road accidents in India include breakdown & malfunction of poorly maintained older vehicles plying on the roads causing mishaps, inadequate road engineering, lack of understanding and non-following of road safety rules, behavioural issue such as over-speeding, not wearing helmets while riding, not wearing seatbelts while driving and so forth. In a continuing trend, most victims of road accidents are young. Recognizing the need for a comprehensive approach to road safety, TKM is committed to creating awareness among future road users through its uniquely designed road safety initiatives with a focus on not only manufacturing ‘Safe Cars’ but also ensuring ‘People’s Safety on Roads’.
Mr. Vikram Gulati, Country Head and Executive Vice President at Toyota Kirloskar Motor, said, “Through ‘Toyota Safety Education Program’ and Toyota Hackathon, we aim to educate the future road users – school children on the importance of road safety and inculcate responsible road behaviour to eliminate road mishaps. Children are the change agents who can bring desirable transformations in the society. We are strong advocates of the fact that safety messages should be seeded in school curriculum which ultimately will serve as an enabler to drive positive behavioural change. In this direction, our road safety efforts involve an integrated approach, harmonizing people, vehicles, and the traffic environment. TKM’s dual road safety initiatives are a testament to the company’s continued focus to foster a culture of road sense and innovations amongst the youth, thereby contribute to the safety of the future generations.”
Being a safety leader, TKM encourages the school children to become the change-makers in the realm of road safety through implementation of TSEP and Toyota Hackathon. Additionally, these road safety initiatives undertaken by the company includes capacity building for teachers and student leaders, improved school visibility, road safety contributions to national and global priorities (UN SDG3), and the development of life skill sets in students.