Responsible Young Drivers aim to assist some 450 persons on New Year’s Eve
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    Responsible Young Drivers aim to assist some 450 persons on New Year’s Eve

    © Belga
    © Belga

    Some 30 to 40 volunteers have confirmed their participation in an initiative by the Responsible Young Drivers (RYD) to assist motorists in Brussels and Walloon Brabant on New Year’s Eve, according to the organisation’s spokesperson, Mathilde Toril-Garcia.“We’ll be able to help up to 450 persons,” Toril-Garcia said.

    The organisation expects a total of about 50 dispatchers and drivers to be involved in the initiative, which mainly involves assisting people who feel they are in no condition to drive their vehicles.

    In Belgium, a ban on driving with a blood alcohol concentration of over 0.05% applies to both motorists and cyclists. In such situations the risk of involvement in an accident increases by 40%.

    According to information posted on the RYD’s website, , anyone in need of such assistance can call the organisation’s number, 0902/69.669, between midnight and six a.m. on the night of 31 December to 1 January.

    Once the call is connected, the caller enters the code of the region where he or she is located.  The call is then automatically redirected to the closest dispatcher, who requests relevant information from the caller, makes sure the vehicle’s documents – insurance, registration number etc. – are in order, contacts an RYD vehicle and on-passes the distressed vehicle’s information to it.

    The RYD vehicle then goes to the location with two volunteers on board.

    After checking the distressed vehicle’s papers to make sure they are in order, one of the volunteers drives the occupants to their destination.

    The second volunteer follows them to pick up the first one upon completion of their mission.

    Christopher Vincent
    The Brussels Times