Local Govt | National News Video | Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Search

 


Record Low Drowning Toll But Children’s Deaths Concern

Record Low Drowning Toll But Children’s Deaths Concern

Eighty-one people drowned in New Zealand waters in 2013 – down from 98 in 2012 and the lowest number since records began in 1980.

But while the overall decrease is promising, five pre-schoolers drowned last year – up 67% on 2012. And the number of 5-14 year olds that drowned – at six – is double the five-year average (three) and equal to 2012.

Water Safety New Zealand CEO, Matt Claridge, says it’s reassuring that the toll is heading in the right direction, but an increase in the number of pre-schoolers drowning – and no drop in the 5-14 year old toll – is of concern.

“Overall, it’s great that the toll is tracking down but eighty-one deaths is still a huge number ranking us amongst the worst in the developed world. And no pre-schoolers should be drowning in this country. Kids under five should be within arms reach of a parent or caregiver at all times in, on, and around water.

“Initiatives such as Sealord Swim for Life and the Plunket bath mat campaign have never been more important. If we are to achieve a cultural change in behaviour around water, it’s crucial that we up-skill Kiwi kids with swim to survive skills at school age, and later through Day Skipper and other initiatives.”

Matt Claridge says for every drowning, another 1.8 people (on average) are hospitalised due to near or non-fatal drownings.

“This is of huge concern and comes at considerable social and economic cost to the community long-term.”

Men – at 62 or 77% of 2013’s drownings – continue to be over represented in the drowning toll.

Kiwi blokes are a priority area for New Zealand’s water safety sector and a huge amount of work is being done by organisations such as Maritime New Zealand, Coastguard and Surf Lifesaving New Zealand to change behaviour in, on and around water, says Matt Claridge.

Mr Claridge says Water Safety New Zealand will continue to lead the sector towards reducing the drowning toll further in 2014 by targeting priority groups such as men, the parents of under 5s, and recreational beach and river users.

“We need to halve the number of men drowning and reduce the pre-school toll to zero – but all New Zealanders need to play a role in achieving this.

“There’s no room for complacency when it comes to water safety. I’m sure all New Zealanders would agree that eighty-one deaths is eighty-one too many.”

As at 8 January 2014 there have been four drownings in New Zealand so far this year.

Other National 2013 Statistics


• 20 – or just under a quarter of drownings – occurred while the victims were taking part in watersports. 16 of these deaths occurred while swimming.
• The number of land-based fishing drownings were consistent with the five year average at eight deaths.
• Powered boat deaths at eight, were down significantly on the 2012 total of 18.
• Gisborne and Tasman were the only regions where no drownings occurred in 2013.
• Hawke’s Bay, Marlborough, Northland, Bay Of Plenty and Otago were the five regions that had an increase in drownings in 2013. Otago had the greatest percentage increase, up 200% from two in 2012 to six in 2013. Northland had the greatest amount increase, up 83% from six in 2012 to 11 in 2013.
• In 2013, the greatest number of drownings occurred at beaches (19), followed by rivers (18) and offshore (11).

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Easter: Have A Safe Holiday And/Or Don't Mislead On Surcharges

Commerce Commission: “Businesses that do apply a surcharge must ensure people are alerted to this before they make a decision to purchase. This gives consumers the ability to decide whether they are prepared to pay a surcharge or would rather go elsewhere,” Ms Rawlings said.

“The reason for the surcharge must be accurately described and must not mislead consumers. For example a business must not claim their surcharge on Easter Sunday is because it is a public holiday, as the only public holidays over the Easter weekend are Good Friday and Easter Monday.” More>>

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Law Foundation Report: New Zealand Going Backwards On Human Rights

Greens: A report released today, Fault lines: Human Rights in New Zealand, looked at our commitment to six different international human rights treaties and found New Zealand sorely lacking in our commitment to human rights in practice to the point we’re going backwards. More>>

ALSO:

War Prep: “Gerrymandering” The Iraq Deployment

NZ First: “On Tuesday, it was ‘up to 50 troops’ training in Australia but yesterday that number grew to 100... Given pre-deployment training and now integrated training with the Australian Army, it seems to go beyond the supposed training role our men and women are meant to be tasked with undertaking.” More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Inadequate Response To Sexual Violence Prevention

On combatting sexual violence, the government has finally begun to undo some of the problems that were of its own making. Early in March, ACC launched the Integrated Services for Sensitive Claims scheme – a package aimed at improving the attitudes of ACC staff towards sexual violence victims, and offering them more substantive support.

Hopefully, this will help to reverse the damage done with the insensitive, punitive ACC policy put in place by the incoming Key government in 2009, which in some parts of New Zealand, saw 90 per cent of sexual violence victims being turned away by ACC. More>>

ALSO:

Child, Youth and Family Review:

"To Help Families Get Ahead": April 1 Changes Kick In

Prime Minister John Key says Paid Parental Leave, the parental tax credit, the minimum wage and Superannuation will increase, while average ACC levies will fall, and more people will be helped in to home ownership... More>>

ALSO:

Climate: Ministers Exclude Emissions From ‘Environment Reporting'

The National Party Government has today revealed that the national environmental report topics for this year will, incredibly, exclude New Zealand’s greenhouse gas emissions, the Green Party said today. More>>

ALSO:

No Retrial: Freedom At Last For Teina Pora

The Māori Party is relieved that the Privy Council has cleared the final legal hurdle for Teina Pora who was wrongfully convicted of murder and sent to prison for 22 years. More>>

ALSO:

Germanwings Crash: Privacy Act Supports Aviation Safeguards In New Zealand

Reports that German privacy laws may have contributed to the Germanwings air crash have prompted New Zealand’s Privacy Commissioner to reassure the public that the Privacy Act is no impediment to medical practitioners notifying appropriate authorities to a pilot’s health concerns. More>>

ALSO:

Treaty: Taranaki Iwi Ngāruahine Settles Treaty Claims For $67.5mln

The settlement includes a $13.5 million payment the government made in June 2013, as well as land in the Taranaki region. The settlement also includes four culturally significant sites, the Waipakari Reserve, Te Kohinga Reserve, Te Ngutu o te Manu and Te Poho o Taranaki. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Regional
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news