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Fawcett Security – Making our roads safer

Fawcett Security has a great reputation for keeping our homes and businesses safe, and now they’re making our roads safer too. In June 2017 Fawcett introduced the first and only driving simulator in Zimbabwe. This brand new, one of a kind, initiative could not have come at a better time as driving on our roads has become positively dangerous. It seems like almost every week we hear of serious fatal accidents involving buses, trucks, kombis and private vehicles. Fawcett has a fleet of around 350 vehicles and they first introduced the simulator to be used in-house.

The initial idea was to ensure their own drivers were driving safely, as well as to help reduce fleet maintenance costs by training drivers to drive economically and sensibly by, for example, not riding the clutch, not breaking too hard, or accelerating unnecessarily. Although the simulator is based on a small passenger vehicle it can be set up to imitate driving a normal passenger vehicle, a bus or different classes of heavy vehicles. It can also simulate different driving conditions – night driving or driving in rain or mist or heavy traffic, in fact it can recreate just about any driving situation in just about any vehicle.

The machine resembles the front section of a small sedan with a driver’s seat, steering wheel, accelerator, clutch and brake pedals, light switches, indicators, wiper switches and all the correct details. The driver or trainee sits in front of three computer screens which are like the car’s windscreen. The three screens create a fully immersive, realistic experience. In addition, at the Fawcetts driving Centre there are three other large wall mounted screens so onlookers can share the experience. The instructor can observe another screen at the back of the machine.

The simulator has three main functions: as a tool to train learner drivers; as a preemployment assessment for employers to make sure the driver has the necessary skills; and it can be used to train licensed drivers to drive defensively. Defensive driving is becoming more and more important on the roads these days as the standard of driving has dropped so dramatically and there are so many more vehicles on our roads. The simulator was displayed at the recent Harare Agricultural Show in a shared stand with the Automobile Association of Zimbabwe.

The simulator is easily moved to different off site locations so it can be used to train senior students in schools, companies with large fleets, or wherever it’s needed, provided there is an adequate Internet connection. Classes of up to eight trainees can be easily accommodated at the Fawcett Training School. Quentin Mathazia attended a training course in South Africa and is a skilled and experienced Simulator Instructor who can guide trainees through the whole process.

The advantages of the simulator are:

  • The anxiety of the pupil is decreased. Training happens in a safe environment without stress, which enhances learning.
  • Situations which one cannot see while driving (skidding of the clutch for example) can now be visualised.
  • Because the driving environment is entirely controlled, the focus on progressive teaching objectives is more concentrated.
  • A simulator makes it possible to follow a progression established in advance and to evaluate the trainee’s performance in a methodical manner.
  • The trainee can be put in and made accustomed to situations that do not occur frequently on the road. A simulator training environment is without risk and thus authorises experimentation in dangerous situations.
  • A simulator ensures standardised driver training, thereby guaranteeing a level of quality for all students, trainees who have a fear of driving.
  • Driving simulation integrates with classroom sessions. Fawcett Security has the sole rights for the driving simulator in Zimbabwe. Booking is essential and sessions can usually be accommodated within a few days. For more information call Fawcett Security on: Tel: 621131-9, 086 7004888/9 Cell: (Quentin Mathazia) 0715 722 525 Or visit their website: resulting in safer driver behaviour.
  • Simulation can immediately output the results of the training. This means that a trainee can quickly know his mistakes and take corrective action.
  • Fewer hours on the road reduces fuel consumption, which is good for the environment. One hour in the simulator gives a CO2 emission of 13 times less than one hour in a car.
  • The simulator ensures high quality training in less time and at lower cost.
  • The driving simulator is very suitable for both learnes and experienced drivers

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