A leading driver training centre which received funding through The Journal Let’s Grow Fund has officially opened its doors.
Billingham-headquartered Tadea – an energy efficiency specialist – has created nine new jobs after deciding to locate its new low-carbon driving simulator at the newly-opened Ultra Low Carbon Vehicle Enterprise Zone in Sunderland.
Effective Transport Solutions, a new division of Tadea-UK in Billingham, is bringing the equipment to the zone at its base in Zero Carbon Futures, Washin
The new service received an investment boost in August 2014 when it was awarded £114,750 by the Let’s Grow Fund, the Journal and Evening Gazette-led collaboration with BE Group and UNW LLP which provides grant support for capital investment and research and development projects creating or safeguarding jobs in the North East.
The firm’s service – which utilises state-of-the-art driving simulators and offers accredited training courses – drew in representatives from across the fleet and professional motoring sectors, enabling them to experience the centre’s facilities first-hand.
Around 50 delegates attended the event, getting a guided tour of the new centre as well as the opportunity to get behind the wheel of some of the centre’s purpose-built, state-of-the-art simulators.
The firm’s simulator can be programmed to a variety of situations, from ordinary motorway driving to adverse conditions, to help teach motorists to drive safely and simultaneously reduce their carbon emissions.
Primarily aimed at companies with fleets of drivers on the roads, such as haulage firms, the emergency services and local authorities, the centre will also teach motorists driving skills to reduce their fuel costs.
Keynote speaker at the event was motoring TV personality, former presenter of BBC’s Top Gear and staunch advocate of higher driving standards, Quentin Willson.
He said: “I’m hugely impressed with Tadea’s driver education initiatives.
“This is the sort of programme that should be rolled out across the UK from schools to the workplace. The benefits to society from safer driving and fuel efficiency add up to hundreds of millions.”
Gordon Pattie, centre manager at Tadea’s Effective Transport Solutions, said: “After months of hard work, it is great to officially open Tadea’s Effective Transport Solutions service.
“This is a fantastic facility and one which, through the high-quality training we provide, offers huge advantages for businesses which have vehicles on the road – not just those based in the North East, but across the UK as a whole.
“Our aims are to reduce accidents and to help businesses cut fuel costs and carbon emissions. It is the only training centre of its kind in the country and this project has the potential to significantly boost both safety and sustainability on our roads.”