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29 March 2018 Photo Pixabay
Be a law-abiding road-rule citizen these holidays
Follow the rules of the road to be safe.

Road crashes are a major cause of deaths globally, and particularly during the March-April holidays in South Africa. Therefore, abiding by the rules of the road serves to curb the high number of fatalities and is highly recommended. We urge all staff and students to take caution on the roads to ensure a safe return to the campuses next term.

According to Arrive Alive, some of the leading accident causes include drunk driving, failure to wear seatbelts, driver inexperience, driver fatigue, distracted driving and walking, as well as bravado. Be sure to avoid this at all cost.

Obeying the rules of the road saves lives. In 2016, Arrive Alive partnered with the UFS BSafe Campaign to educate students on becoming more responsible drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. For more road safety tips, visit the Arrive Alive website here.

Mawande Mateza, Human Movement Science student, has five simple tips on how to stay safe on the road these holidays – courtesy of Protection Services.

Check out the video below.

News Archive

Researcher works on finding practical solutions to plant diseases for farmers
2017-10-03

 Description: Lisa read more Tags: Plant disease, Lisa Ann Rothman, Department of Plant Sciences, 3 Minute Thesis,  

Lisa Ann Rothman, researcher in the Department of
Plant Sciences.
Photo: Supplied

 


Plant disease epidemics have wreaked havoc for many centuries. Notable examples are the devastating Great Famine in Ireland and the Witches of Salem. 

Plant diseases form, due to a reaction to suitable environments, when a susceptible host and viable disease causal organism are present. If the interactions between these three factors are monitored over space and time the outcome has the ability to form a “simplification of reality”. This is more formally known as a plant disease model. Lisa Ann Rothman, a researcher in the Department of Plant Sciences at the University of the Free State (UFS) participated in the Three Minute Thesis competition in which she presented on Using mathematical models to predict plant disease. 

Forecast models provide promise fighting plant diseases
The aim of Lisa’s study is to identify weather and other driving variables that interact with critical host growth stages and pathogens to favour disease incidence and severity, for future development of risk forecasting models. Lisa used the disease, sorghum grain mold, caused by colonisation of Fusarium graminearum, and concomitant mycotoxin production to illustrate the modelling process. 

She said: “Internationally, forecasting models for many plant diseases exist and are applied commercially for important agricultural crops. The application of these models in a South African context has been limited, but provides promise for effective disease intervention technologies.

Contributing to the betterment of society
“My BSc Agric (Plant Pathology) undergraduate degree was completed in combination with Agrometeorology, agricultural weather science. I knew that I wanted to combine my love for weather science with my primary interest, Plant Pathology. 
“My research is built on the statement of Lord Kelvin: ‘To measure is to know and if you cannot measure it, you cannot improve it’. Measuring the changes in plant disease epidemics allows for these models to be developed and ultimately provide practical solutions for our farmers. Plant disease prediction models have the potential ability to reduce the risk for famers, allowing the timing of fungicide applications to be optimised, thus protecting their yields and ultimately their livelihoods. I am continuing my studies in agriculture in the hope of contributing to the betterment of society.” 

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