Scottish schoolgirls in World Finals of F1 in Schools
Team AcceleRace is an all-girl team from Linlithgow Academy in West Lothian, Scotland. In September 2018, they travelled to Singapore to represent the UK in the World Finals of F1 in Schools.
F1 in Schools is a global STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) competition to design, build and race a miniature F1 car. Competing teams design and manufacture their car using CAD and CAM software. In its fourteenth year, F1 in Schools welcomed over 50 teams from over 25 countries, all competing for the World Champions title.
Tracking app brings peace of mind
In addition to sponsoring the team, security company Securitas provided the 14-year-old girls with the Vismo tracking app. The app was installed on the girls’ smartphones and connected to the Securitas Operations Centre (SOC) in Milton Keynes. From the Operations Centre, a team of security operatives remotely monitored the whereabouts of the team 24/7, providing their parents and family with peace of mind.
The parents received a message real-time, via email and text, as the girls safely arrived in Singapore and the UK (on their return journey). The app automatically sends a message to the traveller, and their chosen contacts, as they move from country to country. It also uses GPS and other technologies to provide tracking updates as the individual travels. Once installed, the app runs in the background on the phone sending automatic updates back to the Operations Centre every twenty minutes and once an hour at night.
The app features a panic button which, if activated, alerts the Operations Centre to contact the individual and if necessary, their emergency contacts. Fortunately, it was not necessary for Team AcceleRace to use the panic button, but they knew it was an available option. Geofencing of high-risk areas and safe zones is also possible with the app. Automatic alerts are sent as the traveller enters and leaves the designated countries.
Team AcceleRace commented: “We just wanted to thank you for making the experience possible. We came 40th overall which we are pleased with, especially as it was our first time at the competition. We also achieved the eighth fastest car time (fastest UK car and fastest all-girls-team car) which we were really surprised but incredibly happy with, especially after having many car repairs before our races.
“Aside from the competition we saw the Grand Prix and went to the pit lane, which was an amazing experience. We also absolutely loved exploring Singapore. Apart from this, we were promoting girls in STEM at the competition and we aim to continue to do this.”
Dermot Murray commented: “As parents, we were all delighted when Team AcceleRace qualified to represent the UK at F1 In Schools World Finals in Singapore – but we were also nervous about our daughters being so far away from home for an extended period of time.
“The app gave us great peace of mind to be able to track the girls at all time. Singapore is a safe place to visit, but being able to track the location of the girls, to an accuracy that we even knew when they were back in their hotel rooms at night, was a great comfort.”
Alex Luke, Remote Security Specialist, Securitas UK