Driving excellence considered at Automechanika

MasterDrive concluded their first hybrid workshop today at the Automechanika and Futuroad Expo 2022. The event was a success with presenters providing a well-rounded perspective on creating driving excellence in South Africa and concluding with a panel discussion assessing the progress South Africa has made and can expect to make in the transition to zero emissions.

The CEO of MasterDrive, Eugene Herbert, says they appreciate the opportunity to host a workshop at the first Automechanika and Futuroad Expo since public gatherings stopped during the pandemic. “Additionally, the topic is particularly important. One cannot overlook the role of companies when creating driving excellence by examining the ethics and consequences to which these companies should be held responsible.

“MasterDrive has long held the theory that the creation of safer roads can only happen with buy-in, commitment and dedication from various sectors in society including individuals, companies and government.”

The presenters addressed the topic of ‘Driving Excellence – Our Role as Companies’ workshop (Examining the Ethics & Consequences):

  • Craig Proctor-Parker, MD of Accident Specialists: The anatomy of a crash. The audience was provided with a perspective on how crash scenes are investigated and the importance of companies complying in the search for answers.
  • Doctor Lee Randall, Co-Founder of the Road Ethics Project: Crashology and the ethics of road users. Doctor Randall examined one of our main road users, taxi drivers, and not only their role in creating driving excellence but the role society should play in creating a safe working environment for these drivers.
  • Wayne Duvenage, CEO of OUTA: Accountability on our roads. This presentation looked at the steps needed to create real and tangible change and to whom this accountability falls.
  • Kuda Takura, Customer Experience Manager at Ford: an OEM perspective on ethics and vehicle safety features. Takura looked at the changing role and demand for safety features in vehicles and how there is varying levels of safety features right now and how in just a few years all vehicles with top safety spec will be the norm
  • Ivana Reis, CEO of Storm Combat: Live demo on counter offensive skills for vulnerable road users. Ivana demonstrated some basic tactics one can employ in a dangerous situation on the road, primarily by having situational awareness.

The workshop also provided the opportunity for a panel discussion on South Africa’s progress towards a world where there are zero emissions by 2050. “Key stakeholders shared pertinent and enlightening information on the topic. In particular, the objective of achieving zero emissions is something that also requires all stakeholders working together.”

 The panel members included:

  • Bazil Govender, CEO of SABOA, shared information the move towards zero emissions within the bus industry and also debunked some false beliefs about its plausibility.
  • Eddie Cooke, independent gas consultant for RMI, provided a perspective on gas as a safe and viable option to power vehicles in the same way current fuel sources do.
  • Rick Franz, CEO of Aversa SA: discussed conversions already made in many fleets and its potential growth.

The hybrid workshop was a success leaving each attendee, whether in-person or virtually, with a wealth of information. “Driving excellence is something that every individual and business should strive toward. These varied perspectives can help each ensure they play their own role in driving this excellence.

“Sustainable and new forms of energy is an extremely relevant and important topic leading most companies’ agendas. While South Africa remains behind, huge steps have been made and it is by considering all perspectives that the country can continue to taking these steps,” says Herbert.