Driving Skills for Life (DSFL), Ford’s global driver safety program, continued to expand across Ford’s ASEAN (Association of Southeast Asian Nations) markets in 2010, with more than 3,500 drivers participating in DSFL training sessions held in the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia.
Since DSFL was launched in the ASEAN markets in 2008, nearly 15,000 people have participated in the popular community-based program, which helps educate and improve the safe driving and fuel efficiency techniques of licensed drivers.
“We’re proud to continue offering the DSFL program across our ASEAN markets. With vehicle ownership in this region exploding in numbers, road safety is also a rapidly growing concern, so our efforts are both relevant and a practical way to help address this issue,” said Peter Fleet, president, Ford ASEAN.
DSFL is offered free-of-charge and has attracted the participation of a wide range of groups and organizations as the program has gained visibility. From the United Nations office in Jakarta, Indonesia, to DHL Worldwide in Hanoi, Vietnam, and a number of top universities in the Philippines, Ford has been asked to provide exclusive DSFL sessions for their employees who are keen to participate.
“The genuine interest and the requests we frequently receive from prominent groups and companies for DSFL really demonstrates how relevant the program is in our markets, as well as the benefit these organizations see in having their employees participate,” said Neal McCarthy, communications director, Ford ASEAN. “The feedback we get from them has been overwhelmingly positive -- often times with a request for additional sessions."
To illustrate this point, Ford Thailand will host two exclusive sessions for the Bank of Thailand’s employees, following two sessions it hosted for them earlier this year. These year-end sessions will bring the total number of participants this year in Thailand to more than 700 drivers.
Ford Group Philippines (FGP) hosted a total of 31 workshops in 2010, with more than 1,600 drivers taking part in the DSFL program. The Philippines’ program this year focused in part on internal safety, with a series of sessions held for FGP employees and selected suppliers who move and transport cargo at Ford’s manufacturing plant.
The Philippines’ DSFL programme also included sessions with FGP fleet customers, civic groups, Ford customers and university students, as well as a half-day workshop with FGP’s road safety youth ambassadors at the Youth Council General Assembly.
In Vietnam, a special partnership with the nationwide Voice-Of-Vietnam (VOV) Traffic Channel kicked off this year, helping to spread the word on safety through a series of five-minute Q&A spots during evening drive-times. DSFL sessions in both the north and south of Vietnam helped get more than 750 drivers into the programme during the calendar year.
Indonesia took advantage of its active Fiesta Facebook community by offering an exclusive DSFL session, with all 50 spots being confirmed within a couple hours of posting the invitation. Additional sessions were held with the general public, drivers and staff of the United Nations, car club members and university students.
"The training was very interesting. I learned many practical tips. One lesson that was particularly eye-opening was about the importance of seatbelts. I never realized that not wearing a seatbelt could be fatal even in a low-speed collision," said Eddy Sugihartono Tandya, a recent college graduate who participated in a DSFL seminar in Surabaya, Indonesia.
With Ford’s help, many more students, non-profit, government and private sector employees throughout the ASEAN region will become safer, smarter drivers in 2011.