Driving down a road on a sunny day

About DIAD

 ONSITE & VIRTUAL, INTERACTIVE workplace safety seminars
and youth presentations are available.

Drop It And Drive® was launched in 2010 and in 2017, DIAD began operating under the auspices of the Traffic Injury Research Foundation (TIRF) as a TIRF educational program. TIRF is an independent road safety research institute established in 1964 and is internationally recognized for its cutting-edge research, and delivery of objective, evidence-based knowledge to support the development, implementation, and evaluation of road safety programs, effective advocacy, and consultation. TIRF is a world leader in research, program and policy development, evaluation, and knowledge transfer with a primary focus on road user behaviours.

Together, DIAD and TIRF blend evidence-based data and research produced by TIRF with the frontline program development and community engagement made available through DIAD.

What makes DIAD unique?

DIAD uses science, real stories and fun interactive exercises to explain and demonstrate what behaviours increase risk and why, as well as share stories about the real consequences of these behaviours. This approach is designed to motivate behaviour change through personally relevant examples.

Our corporate seminars are customized to each client and their geographic location. We demonstrate easy-to-use tools to help managers and employees identify risk-related distractions in their workplace, and, share practical strategies for companies to implement distraction-related policies. Pre- and post-surveys are used to identify issues, trends and measure change.

DIAD joint worker/supervisor seminars are typically 3.5 hours in length, including breaks. We also offer a variety of seminar formats and lengths to meet client needs, ranging from safety conference presentations to full-day comprehensive, hands-on seminars.

Our focus for youth presentations is to provide students with the science of ‘how and why’ distracted driving, and distracted walking, is risky behaviour. Taking a reality-based approach, we also discuss, through sharing personal stories, the real consequences of a moment’s distraction. At the end of each presentation, we want students to feel empowered, through increased knowledge and understanding, to be road safety ambassadors within their families, school and community.

“A ‘must’ presentation for the educational system. Powerful and realistic scenarios that make the students believe in what could ultimately happen.” – LA Matheson Secondary

What is the added value of DIAD?

DIAD corporate clients are offered the opportunity to sponsor a free school presentation in their community in conjunction with the corporate seminar. Clients are recognized for their sponsorship during the school presentation and also presented with a certificate of recognition. This helps create a community-based approach to road safety protecting the workforce, their younger family members and neighbours.

DIAD also provides access to the team of TIRF researchers who are knowledgeable about a broad range of road safety issues, and who can share the latest research findings and evidence-based programs and policies. The TIRF team has worked with practitioners across transportation, health and criminal justice systems throughout North America and around the world.

TIRF’s DIAD Education Program presenter bios:

Karen Bowman, Director, Communications & Programs:
Karen founded TIRF’s Drop It And Drive® (DIAD) program in 2010 and is frequently called on by the media for comments on issues related to distracted driving and road safety. The interactive style of the DIAD program helps achieve behavioural change through imparting knowledge, science, and practical, usable tools in a highly efficient and engaging manner. DIAD programs are well-known across multiple sectors and industries for their current content, community and workplace expertise, and practical implementation strategies to address distraction-related workplace risks from an occupational health and safety perspective. Karen is an international public speaker on road safety and actively tracks new knowledge and initiatives related to distracted driving through her network of contacts across several countries. Click here for a more comprehensive bio.

Captain Tim Baillie (Retired), Surrey Fire Services:
During his 27 years as a firefighter, Tim has attended more than a thousand motor vehicle collisions and has extensive rescue experience. Tim’s fire fighting career experiences bring an accurate and passionate perspective to this topic which helps create a reality-based learning experience. Tim’s background includes instructing at the Justice Institute of BC, OH&S Chair for the British Columbia Professional Fire Fighters (BCPFFA) for 10 years, Critical Incident Stress Management Peer Diffuser, BC Federation of Labour OH&S representative for 12 years, and BCPFFA Vice-President Emeritus.

Inspector Mark Andrews, Ontario Provincial Police (Retired):
Mark is a 32-year veteran of the Ontario Provincial Police with 14 years as the Traffic Manager for the North East Region as Commander, Traffic and Marine (491,000 sq. kms). In this role, Mark managed six specialty traffic teams, 13 Detachment Traffic and Marine Operations, Commercial Motor Vehicle Enforcement Unit, Snowmobile, All Terrain and Vehicle Enforcement Unit (SAVE), Technical Traffic Collision Investigation (TTCI)/Reconstruction Program and Collision Design Through Environmental Assessment. Mark currently delivers a Communications in Criminal Justice Course in 2016 at a Communications in Criminal Justice Course at Nipissing University and remains active with the Ontario Injury Prevention Practitioners Network. Click here for a more comprehensive bio.

Kylee Bowman, Lead, TIRF Youth Advisor Program: Kylee leads the Youth Advisor Program at the Traffic Injury Research Foundation (TIRF), with support and guidance from senior staff. TIRF’s Youth Advisor Program is designed to tap into the views, experiences and attitudes of young road users and help TIRF develop educational strategies and communiciate risks in ways that are relatable and engaging for young audiences. Another objective of this program is to give voice to young road users to positively influence road safety policies and practices. Kylee recently completed a graduated driver licensing program as well as previously completing two driver education courses. She was crash-involved as an 8-year-old, and since 2011, she has been part of TIRF’s Drop It And Drive® education program. Click here for a more comprehensive bio.

Robyn Robertson, President & CEO, TIRF: Robyn first joined TIRF as a Research Assistant in 1999 and was promoted to increasingly senior positions. She was appointed President & CEO by the Board of Directors in 2006. She is the author of TIRF’s knowledge translation model, and is well-versed in implementation strategies and operational practices across several sectors. As a knowledge broker Robyn has negotiated strong working relationships with a range of professional organizations to engage them in research initiatives. She is skilled at communicating technical information to diverse audiences and has authored educational primers for different audiences. She has also organized and hosted national and international conferences. Click here for a more comprehensive bio.

Staff Sergeant Bryan Fedirchuk, BCHP – Kamloops
*Special guest speaker as available:

S/Sgt. Fedirchuk joined the RCMP in March 1996 and transferred to Traffic in June 1997, conducting traffic enforcement and collision investigation. He has 10 years experience as a collision analyst, has been a motor officer since 1998 and a motorcycle instructor since 2003. S/Sgt Fedirchuk has investigated thousands of collisions; this extensive experience gives him insights into this issue that are unique and invaluable in providing a clear understanding of the mechanics and physics of traffic safety. S/Sgt Fedirchuk continues to be an active RCMP instructor in several traffic-related fields, providing direction and insight to all levels of policing as requested.

In MemoriamSergeant Robert (Bob) Nordlund, Surrey RCMP June 9, 1947 – November 14, 2019:
Bob retired in 2011 after spending 26 plus years in traffic law enforcement and collision investigation. Bob was DIAD’s first RCMP co-speaker beginning in 2010; he was immediately supportive of DIAD’s efforts and selflessly shared his delightful sense of humour, heartfelt passion for road safety and insightful experiences during our presentations. Thank you for everything, Bob, you are missed.