Published: 05 November 2015
Mr Bernard Tay, Chairman, Road Safety Council
Deputy Commissioner of Police, Mr Lim Kok Thai
Commander Traffic Police, Mr Sam Tee
Mr Samuel de Guzman [pronounced as GOOZ-men], GM of Shell Singapore Retail
Mdm Kew Mee Ying, Principal, St Hilda's Primary School
Teachers, Parents and Students
The Shell Traffic Games – A Part of Growing Up in Singapore
1. Good morning. I am delighted to be here this morning to join you for the closing of the 35thShell Traffic Games. Since the beginning of this year, more than 17,000 boys and girls from 80 primary schools have participated in the Games. Large numbers of our future generation of Singaporeans coming through this milestone programme. They take on the roles of pedestrians, cyclists and go-kart drivers, and many of you here would have had the opportunity to learn and practise good road safety habits through very fun and interactive sessions. This year, we also invited our senior citizens to join our students, to foster closer ties between the seniors and the young ones.
2 Indeed, the Shell Traffic Games have become part of our growing up years in Singapore. Many generations of students have learnt about road safety through these Games at the Road Safety Community Park since 1981. I remember participating when I was in Primary School: always wanted to be a go-kart driver, but I was assigned the role of pedestrian instead. But on hindsight, that is the most important learning lesson especially as a child.
Importance of Engaging and Educating Our Children on Road Safety
3 In the first nine months of this year, there were 179 traffic accidents involving children below the age of 12. This is an increase from 150 accidents for the same period last year. Many of these accidents are avoidable and we must do more to prevent them from happening. Awareness and public education is absolutely crucial.
4 The Traffic Police (TP) and Singapore Road Safety Council (SRSC) are committed to educating our children about the dangers on the road. We will equip them with the knowledge and skills to protect themselves. Last year, TP reached out to more than 33,000 primary school students on road safety. This year, TP, together with Road Safety Council, are launching a new initiative to set up Road Safety Corners in our schools. The first Road Safety Corner will be set up here in St Hilda's Primary.
5 The Road Safety Corner will provide students and parents with information on good road safety habits. You will learn how to identify and avoid the blind spots of vehicles, especially heavy vehicles, and what to do when crossing the road. For parents who drive your children to school, you will get tips on how to drop off your children safely, and the importance of keeping to the speed limits within the School Zone. TP will also train selected Upper Primary students from St Hilda's Primary to be Young Road Safety Champions and their role is to introduce fellow students to the Road Safety Corner and share useful information with them. We encourage more schools to partner TP and Road Safety Council on this.
Making Our Roads Safer for Our Children
6 Parents, you play a very important role in inculcating good road safety habits in our children. They look to you as role models. So we must set a positive example for them to follow. We, ourselves, must practise good road safety habits in our daily lives. This includes obeying traffic rules, be it wearing seatbelts, using pedestrian crossings and overhead bridges, and certainly not using smartphones and other smart devices when we cross roads or when we are driving, because our children are watching and learning from us.
7 To all the participants and prize-winners of the 35th Shell Traffic Games, I hope you put into practice what you have learnt from participating in the Games. Please share these important lessons with your classmates, friends, even parents and grandparents. Remind them that everyone can and must contribute towards a safer road culture in Singapore.
8 I will like to thank the Shell Companies in Singapore, the Tote Board, Singapore Pools Private Limited, Bukit Batok Driving Centre, ComfortDelgro Driving Centre and Singapore Safety Driving Centre. Your strong and long-standing support for the Shell Traffic Games has ensured its continued success.
9 With this, I close the 35th Shell Traffic Games. Congratulations to all our winners and I wish everyone a safe year ahead! Thank you.