The Road Safety Authority has announced the winners of its annual Seatbelt Sheriff Awards which celebrate the dedication and creative ideas of primary school children to keep themselves, their friends and their loved ones safe on our roads.
The Seatbelt Sheriff Awards are now in their 19th year, and while it’s not their first rodeo, this year marks the first year that the Seatbelt Sheriff galloped off into the sunset to deliver the awards in person to the winning schools -see video of the Seatbelt Sheriff’s road trip here.
First class students from Scoil Naomh Muire Eas Géitine, Clounreask, Askeaton, Co. Limerick were awarded first prize in the ‘Seatbelt Sheriff’ competition for their poster “Keep your seatbelt clicked on tight or else you might get a big fright”, while second class students from Borris National School, Borris, Co. Carlow came out top in the ‘High Glo Silver’ competition for their poster “Be keen to be seen”.
Minister of State at the Department of Transport and at the Department of Environment, Climate and Communications, Jack Chambers said: “We all have a duty of care to share the road in a safe and responsible way and to set an example to young people. One of these ways is by wearing our seatbelts correctly and I am delighted to see the dedication of so many schoolchildren all over the country take part in the Seatbelt Sheriff Awards. These awards are important for instilling road safety education in young people, and I would like to congratulate all the winners and runners-up on their stellar efforts.”
Sam Waide, Chief Executive, RSA said: “It’s always wonderful to see so many enthusiastic students take part in this annual competition, which gives them a fun and creative way to learn important road safety skills. When it comes to road safety education, we need to lead by example by wearing our seatbelts correctly. Starting road safety education at an early age helps young people grow up confident in their knowledge of using the roads safely. Each project shows the enthusiasm and commitment of the students to the future of road safety, and I’d like to offer a huge congratulations to all the award winners, runners-up and their teachers.”
Liz O’Donnell, Chairperson, RSA said: “I am delighted to see so many creative and imaginative entries from the terrific students who took part in this year’s Seatbelt Sheriff Awards. Road safety education saves lives and the lessons they learn through their creativity will stay with them throughout their lives to keep them safe on our roads. Congratulations to all the winners, runners-up and everyone who made an entry for their fantastic efforts.”
Assistant Commissioner, Paula Hilman, Roads Policing and Community Engagement, said: “On behalf of An Garda Síochána, I would like to congratulate the students and teachers who are playing their part in making the roads safer for themselves and other road users. Teaching road safety skills at a young age is vitally important, and we encourage other parents and teachers around the country to build on the work being done in schools. Well done to all the students and teachers for the fantastic work in helping to promote road safety.”
‘Seatbelt Sheriff’ and ‘Hi-Glo Silver’ are fun, educational road safety programmes for children in first and second class in primary school. Children in first class become ‘Seatbelt Sheriffs’ by taking a pledge to wear their seatbelts and making sure that everyone else in the car is buckled up too. Once they become ‘Seatbelt Sheriffs’, they can flash their sheriff’s badge so that everyone they’re travelling with knows that they must wear their seatbelts.
After becoming honorary ‘Seatbelt Sheriffs’ in first class, ‘Hi-Glo Silver’ encourages second class students to wear bright clothing when they are out walking or cycling at night or in poor visibility. They will pledge to wear jackets, armbands or belts and remind their parents, family and friends to do the same. Just like becoming a ‘Seatbelt Sheriff’, pupils will receive a certificate that gives them the power to instruct everyone when they are out walking or cycling in poor visibility to wear visible clothing. Everyone on the roads needs to be safe and be seen and all motorists, motorcyclists, people who cycle and pedestrians are encouraged to ensure that other road users can see them so we all share the roads safely together.
In the ‘Seatbelt Sheriff’ competition, the runners up were:
- “BUCKLE Up to it could Grave” – Clooney NS, Carrahan, Tulla, Co Clare
- “Dédn Rud amháin Ceangail Chrois is beidh Slán!” – Scoil Aonghusa, Geata An Domhanigh, Drogheda, Co Louth
- “Driving Fast Driving Slow Seatbelt fastened on the Go!” – Scoil Naomh Pádraig, Corracrin, Emyvale, Co Monaghan
- “Buckle up on every trip” – St Annin’s NS, Rosscahill, Co Galway.
In the ‘Hi-Glo Silver’ competition, the runners up were:
- “Hi Viz is for everyday not just Wednesday” – Clooney NS, Carrahan, Tulla, Co Clare
- “Shine Bright Light up the Night” – Garranbane NS, Garranbane, Dungarvan, Co Waterford
- “Make it Bright- Try your best” – Scoil Naomh Muire Eas Géitine, Cloonreask, Askeaton, Co Limerick
- “Even when the moon is bright be in sight day or night” – Scoil Mocheallóg, Kilmallock, Co Limerick
Further information on the Road Safety Authority’s ‘Seatbelt Sheriff’ and ‘Hi-Glo Silver’ educational programmes is available at www.seatbeltsheriff.ie and also please see Seatbelt Sheriff ‘live on the scene’, presentation of RSA Seatbelt Sheriff/High Glo Silver Awards 2023 here.