Safety first: MAN continues campaign promoting safe routes to school


It was one of the main protagonists at today's meeting with Bavarian Minister of the Interior Joachim Herrmann in Nuremberg, organised by the joint initiative "Safe to school - safe home": a MAN Lion's Intercity, kitted out with numerous innovative safety and assistance systems. The bus was also part of the road safety campaign in schools launched by MAN in 2020. The next phase of this campaign will begin in autumn.

  • Keeping the kids safe: MAN Truck & Bus continues successful road safety campaign in autumn
  • A child's route to school must be safe! Joachim Herrmann, Bavarian Minister of the Interior, Sports and Integration, hails the commitment of stakeholders
  • Experts from local road safety associations and MAN ProfiDrive have been visiting primary schools and showing pupils the things they need to remember when taking the bus
  • MAN’s active turning warning system with pedestrian detection helps to prevent accidents caused by blind spots

The youngest road users amongst us have always been the focal point of the campaign that MAN Truck & Bus launched last year. To show them what they need to keep in mind when taking the bus, experts from road safety associations visited numerous primary schools in Bavaria together with instructors from the training provider MAN ProfiDrive in autumn 2020 – and are now continuing the campaign. Joining them on tour: an MAN Lion's Intercity. “Showing children how they should behave right next to a bus and on board a bus is much more effective than purely theoretical instruction,” says Heinz Kiess, Head of Product Marketing Bus at MAN Truck & Bus, adding: “For one thing, the children are more attentive because it is more exciting for them. And secondly, they are better at internalising what they have been taught if they can practise it.”

The MAN Lion's Intercity was also one of the main protagonists at today's meeting with Joachim Herrmann, Bavarian Minister of the Interior, Sports and Integration, in Nuremberg. The meeting was organised by the partners of the joint initiative "Safe to school - safe home". Partners include the ADAC Verkehrssicherheitskreis Bayern e.V. (ADAC Bavarian Road Safety Association), the Bavarian State Ministry for Education and Culture, the Landesverkehrswacht Bayern e.V. (Bavarian Road Safety Organisation), the Bavarian Police and Landesverband Bayerischer Omnibusunternehmen e.V. (Bavarian Bus Companies Association) and many others. For almost 50 years now, they have been committed to ensuring safe routes to school within the framework of this alliance, which was also the topic at the meeting in Munich. “School route safety is a particularly important concern for me. Every child who is harmed on the way to school is one too many”, Joachim Herrmann made clear and added: “That is why we must not slacken our efforts to ensure safety on the way to school. Technical progress is also helping us to do this."

To show what is already technically feasible in terms of safety, Herrmann presented the MAN Lion's Intercity and its safety systems at the event. These include, among other assistants, the turning assistant with pedestrian detection, which has an active warning function. “Unfortunately, because of the blind spot, accidents while turning are still a regular occurrence. With our innovative systems, we are aiming to play an important role in improving road safety, especially at junctions,” stresses Kiess. To this end, a front camera and additional cameras on one or both sides of the vehicle monitor the traffic at all times, ensuring that the driver is under much less pressure in dangerous turning situations. The driver is actively alerted to any dangerous situations or impending collisions, with visual warnings from two displays installed in their field of vision and an additional, acoustic warning signal. The modern driving and turning assistant systems also increase safety, as they reliably detect pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists in the driver’s blind spot, and actively draw the driver’s attention to the hazardous situation. “Improving safety for all road users is something we think about all the time, and that drives us forwards. That is why we are investing all our experience and expertise – not least in the development of innovative assistance systems,” Kiess concludes.

Road safety campaign in primary schools moves into its next phase

And for this reason, MAN Truck & Bus has also decided to continue the extremely successful road safety campaign launched in autumn of last year. “We were able to raise awareness of road safety among many children in 2020. We are all the more pleased to see how much interest there has been,” says Kiess, adding: “Assuming social responsibility and standing up for the safety of all road users is a matter of course for us.” To this end, MAN is currently in contact with the road safety associations in various Bavarian districts to look at and arrange dates for events at schools in the new school year.

At the training sessions, the children learn about and practise waiting for the bus, what to do when the bus arrives at the stop, what to remember when getting on and off, how to behave on the bus, and how to sit properly when they’ve got their school bags with them. “We also use a triangular orange tarpaulin to demonstrate to the children just how big the blind spot is for a bus driver. It is important that the pupils themselves realise and experience how limited visibility is for the driver,” says Manfred Raubold, Managing Director of Landesverkehrswacht Bayern (Bavarian Road Safety Organisation). The children are also shown how heavy a bus tyre is and what can happen during emergency braking.

A total of 300 children from Year One to Year Three were given training in 2020. “This campaign is something special – not just for the children, but for MAN as well. It’s amazing how attentive they are in following what we tell and show them, and how they put their new knowledge into practice straight away – even the kids in Year One. We firmly believe that this will enable us to play an important role in ensuring the safety of our children,” says Heinz Kiess. The MAN Truck & Bus team have been supported on the tour by employees from the local “Verkehrswachten”, or road safety associations. They handle the road safety education, while MAN provides the vehicle and driver. “We have been working very closely with MAN ProfiDrive on this. Our training provider’s instructors have many years of experience in this field,” says Kiess. Incidentally, the organisers of the road safety campaign purposely chose the Lion's Intercity because it is often used in school bus transportation.