A ROAD safety initiative credited with reducing deadly crashes involving young people in the Wee County is returning for another year, despite worries over funding.

The Safe Drive Stay Alive roadshow is set to appear on stage during the first week of February 2020 as the hard-hitting project continues to educate senior secondary school pupils more than a decade following its launch.

Local firefighter Alan Faulds, watch manager at Alloa Fire Station and organiser of the show, has managed to secure most of the funds required and is confident the rest will be in place over the coming months.

He had been liaising with local schools to make sure the right age group is targeted at the right time of year.

Alan told the Advertiser: “The feeling I got from nearly all the schools, if not all the schools, was that they had a genuine want for it to continue because the schools believe in it greatly.

“I’ve tried to do my very best to keep it going and I’ve been working hard since the last set of shows [in February this year] to raise money.”

He explained Clackmannanshire Council has committed to providing some funding, but counterparts in Falkirk and Stirling are still to be approached.

When the show was last on in February, Alan said that funding remained a challenge and that it was a possibility the latter two councils could pull the plug on their end, despite thousands of their pupils benefitting each year as well.

Nevertheless, Safe Drive Stay Alive will be back for the 12th year with emergency services personnel on the stage at the Macrobert Arts Centre in Stirling, alongside people whose lives were changed forever as a result of a collision.

Alan said: “If you look at the numbers that we’ve had over the past 12 years - the reductions in death and serious injuries in the age group that we target - it speaks for itself.

“It has a huge effect on young people’s thoughts, whether they are a passenger or driver in a car.”

According to statistics from Transport Scotland, two people a year on average were killed on Clackmannanshire’s roads between 2004-08 with 16 serious injuries – across all age groups.

In 2017 there was one fatality, though the average covering 2013-17 is actually close to zero, and there were only seven serious injuries, 10 on average in the wider time period.

The show is hard-hitting with real people and real stories in focus, Alva Academy’s headteacher Scott McEwan earlier this year described it as something that is “extremely powerful and leaves a real impression on our pupils”.

Alan explained the focus is not just on the drivers, but passengers as well.

He added: “Statistically speaking with [figures] we’ve had from Police Scotland and from the Scottish Government; behaviour within a car causes more incidents than anything else.”