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Young Minds Innovate: Winners of Tamil Nadu's First Road Safety Design Hackathon

Tamil Nadu's inaugural Online Road Safety Design Hackathon culminated in an award ceremony on January 23rd, 2024, held at DJ Academy of Design, felicitating its winners.

This state-wide initiative, a collaborative effort by DJ Academy of Design (DJAD), Coimbatore, UYIR, and Bengaluru’s DQ Labs, challenged school and college students to address local road safety concerns. Participants, utilizing design thinking, empathy, and Chat GPT, devised solutions presented as one-minute video pitches.
Mr. V. Balakrishnan IPS, the Commissioner of Coimbatore City Police, presented awards to the winners in the presence of key dignitaries, including Ms. Lalitha Devi Sanjay Jayavarthanavelu, Managing Trustee of GKD Charity Trust, Mr. M. Rajarajan, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic) in Coimbatore City, Mr. Dion, Director of DQ Labs in Bengaluru, and Mr. M. Rasappan, Executive Director of Lakshmi Corporate Services.
The Hackathon, inaugurated on November 8th by District Collector Mr. Kranthi Kumar Pati IAS, Commissioner of Police Mr. Balakrishnan IPS, SP Mr. Badrinarayanan IPS, along with Dr. S. Rajasekaran, Managing Trustee of UYIR, witnessed enthusiastic participation from students ranging from 8th to 12th grade and undergraduate/postgraduate students representing various educational institutions in Tamil Nadu. A total of 750 students, organized into 170+ teams, registered to showcase their skills in the hackathon.
The students conducted extensive observations for their project and made noteworthy findings. They discovered that road accidents are predominantly caused by individuals with valid driving licenses who opt for reckless driving. Additionally, issues such as large potholes contribute to unfortunate incidents on the road.
Furthermore, the students observed instances where riders compromised their safety by neglecting to wear proper safety gear, including helmets and jackets. They emphasized that implementing specific safety measures could significantly enhance the safety of the city’s roads beyond their current state.
Congratulating the efforts of DJ Academy of Design (DJAD) and UYIR for orchestrating this hackathon, City Police Commissioner Mr. V. Balakrishnan highlighted the pivotal role these organizations play in facilitating young minds to devise innovative solutions for diverse road safety challenges. “Due to the collective efforts of the traffic police and organizations like UYIR, we have successfully mitigated the number of accidents to some extent. Last year, the incidents, including fatal ones, in Coimbatore City decreased by 10% compared to the preceding year (2022),” he stated.
In praising the participants, the commissioner expressed, “Any effort aimed at averting accidents, enhancing convenience, and ensuring a positive on-road experience for users is praiseworthy. Such initiatives can significantly contribute to societal well-being, and I view your effort in that light.
He extended gratitude to the participants for their valuable ideas, mentioning that the city police will explore the possibility of experimenting with several innovative road-safety concepts showcased and evaluate their feasibility for implementation on the road.

Category 1

8th to 10th standard category, the students from VAV International School, Udumalpet secured the first prize in the, Kikani Vidhya Mandir, Coimbatore, students claimed the second prize, while the third prize was shared by students from VAV International School, Udumalpet, and the team from Sri Chaitanya Techno School, Coimbatore.

Category 2

11th to 12th standard, the Nachimuthu Polytechnic College’s team from Pollachi secured the first prize. The second prize went to the team from Chandrakanthi Public School in Coimbatore, while the third prize was claimed by the team from Thamarai International School in Thanjavur.

Category 3

The first prize was secured by the students from PSGR Krishnammal College for Women, Coimbatore, while the team from Sri Ramakrishna Engineering College, Coimbatore, claimed the second prize.

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