An inspirational Whitby teenager has received a prestigious award for her contribution to road safety after her brother died in a car crash.
Brave Tiffany Rollins received a Chief Constable’s commendation for her work with the ‘Actions have Consequences’ project where she tells her poignant and emotional story.
Her beloved older brother Dan Rollins died, aged 18, in a crash near Ugthorpe in 2013 when his Seat Arosa veered onto the wrong side of the road at high speed and hit an oncoming vehicle.
The 19-year-old student said: “When I start speaking everyone is shocked. Everyone at the end is upset and some start to cry – that’s the reaction we’re hoping for.
“I feel I need to talk about it to prevent it from happening. It’s something I don’t want other people to go through.”
The “Actions have Consequences” project is a talk delivered to people aged 17 to 21 that tells the story of a serious road traffic collision from the experiences of four different people – a member of each emergency service and Tiffany.
“Most people think that these things won’t happen to them and that they’re invincible, when in fact it can happen to anyone,” Tiffany said.
“I was shocked but highly honoured to have been awarded a commendation from the Chief Constable.
“I hope that the work the Actions have Consequences group has put together continues and that it teaches many more young adults in the area about the dangers on the roads.” The Coventry University student has been an advocate for road safety since she was 15 after her brother’s death and posts about road safety on social media.
She sometimes sees young people in their cars doing ‘laps’ of Whitby and driving dangerously.
“If I see them I do go over to them and give them a lecture. I tell them what happened with Dan. A lot of them do pay attention to what I say and do change,” Tiffany added.
The inspirational teenager has been in touch with station manager Mark Naylor, of North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, after Dan’s crash and he put her forward for the new project.
When Tiffany first got involved last year she met organiser Sergeant Paul Long, of North Yorkshire Police.
“Paul met up with me and I showed him one of my videos and it turns out he was one of the police officers at the scene of Dan’s crash that night.”
Tiffany was presented with the award by Temporary Chief Constable Lisa Winward.
She said: “Tiffany is a passionate road safety advocate.
She has turned the tragic loss of her brother into a positive way inspire young adults to drive safely and recognise that actions have consequences.
“She is an inspiration to her generation particularly within the local area and thoroughly deserves recognition for her work.”
To date, Actions Have Consequences has been delivered to around 350 young people in the Whitby and Scarborough area.
Sgt Long said: “Tiffany’s story really resonates with the audience we are trying to reach.
“Feedback from our audiences shows her story as being the one that really stands out for them, inspiring them to think about the potential consequences of antisocial or dangerous driving.
“My thanks go to Tiffany for her amazing support with the project, she truly is an inspiration.”
Tiffany has made a number of videos to highlight the loss she feels growing up without her brother by her side.
She added: “I just hope that it makes everybody realise that there are consequences to the way you drive on the road, you never know what’s around the next corner.”