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    RYD volunteers drive some 480 persons home early on 1 January

    © Belga
    © Belga

    Responsible Young Drivers (RYD) drove some 480 persons home on the night of Monday to Tuesday, according to the organisation’s coordinators. RYD volunteers took about 300 revellers home on the night of Monday to Tuesday in the capital and the south of the country, the RYD coordinator for Brussels and Wallonia, Laura Gonzalez Schena, said on Tuesday.  “Everything went well,” she added.

    Forty-two RYD volunteers on board 21 vehicles enabled the revellers to return home safely between midnight and six a.m. There were fewer volunteers in Brussels/Wallonia than last year, when there were 55. However, the number of revellers and vehicles rescued was higher this year than on 1 January 2018, when the RYD took 260 people and 88 cars home.

    In Flanders, about 180 persons used the service in the first hours of 2019. This was lower than preceding years, a trend viewed positively by the organisation’s coordinator for the north of the country, Johan Chiers, who saw it as a sign of greater responsibility on the part of motorists.

    The RYD’s aim is not to drive the whole of Belgium home, but to be a last resort when a driver is unable to take the wheel and other means of transport, such as taxis, trains or buses, are not available.

    In such cases, a volunteer drives the revellers home in their own cars while a colleague follows in an RYD vehicle.

    Maria Novak
    The Brussels Times