Student to work on life-saving technology in a bid to reduce road deaths

PUBLISHED: 18:00 26 December 2018

Year 8 Hugh Sexey student Philippa Griffiths collecting her award.	Barbara Evripidou at FirstAvenuePhotography.com

Year 8 Hugh Sexey student Philippa Griffiths collecting her award. Barbara Evripidou at FirstAvenuePhotography.com

Barbara Evripidou at FirstAvenuePhotography.com

A Hugh Sexey Middle School student has been chosen to have her DT project developed into a working prototype, which could help save lives in the future.

Year eight student at the school in Blackford, Philippa Griffiths, will now work with the University of the West of England (UWE) and its WISE team to develop her new car braking system idea.

The prototype is being designed to alert drivers to the extent a car travelling in front of them is braking through using a red light system.

The university has now announced Philippa’s design will be unveiled in the form of a working prototype at the Secondary Engineer Leaders Award (SELA) ceremony next June.

Philippa won in the year seven category of the same awards when she and more than 2,700 children answered the question ‘if you were an engineer – what would you do?’

Her design was then chosen to be put on display to the public at UWE’s Exhibition and Conference Centre event in the summer, and she will now work with a team of engineers at the university to complete the project.

Hugh Sexey’s design and technology teacher, Natalie Lattibeaudiere, said: “I am so proud of Philippa’s fantastic achievement at such a young age.

“This competition was designed to help pupils develop problem-solving skills through creating a solution to a problem within their community, school or the wider world.

“Her design concept shows great ingenuity while she is working on solving a problematic situation in society.”

More than 19 winners from schools across the South West attended the exhibition at the university, with displays ranging from innovative bunk beds to bird-identifier binoculars.

The university is hoping to encourage more girls to get involved with engineering and invited 135 students in years nine to 11 to participate in activities on the day such as bridge building, urban design, smart technologies, and sustainable solutions.

Hugh sexey’s headteacher, Paul Tatterton, said: “This really is a remarkable achievement and possibly the first step in making this life-saving idea a reality.

“Once again it clearly demonstrates the creativity and critical thinking skills of the young people we are so fortunate to teach.”

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