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


$2million invested in drowning prevention but demand on rise

Water Safety New Zealand is investing $2million in water safety interventions in its 2019/20 Funding Round.

Drowning is the leading cause of recreational death and the third highest cause of accidental death in New Zealand. In 2018 there were 66 preventable drowning fatalities. The five year average (2013 – 2017) is 82.

New Zealand’s drowning rate per 100,000 of population is twice that of Australia and four times that of the UK, and over the past ten years the cost of drowning deaths and injuries is in the order of $4.79 billion

WSNZ’s annual contestable Funding Round is primarily funded by the New Zealand Lotteries Grants Board with additional funds from ACC and corporate partners The Warehouse and Protector Aluminium and trusts and foundations.

This year 96 applications were received which requested total funding of $5,219,766. This is over double the number of applications received last year when 43 applications were considered which requested total funding of $1,892,743.

“This is a reflection of what we are seeing in aquatic recreation: an increasing population, increasing participation and increasing demand for water safety education” says WSNZ CEO
Jonty Mills.

“While we would like to fund everything we’ve had to make some hard calls and focus on priority areas. We would like to thank everyone who applied” says Mills.

The $2,044,260 in total funding has been allocated based on these five areas of focus:

1. Drowning prevention programmes provided by national organisations which include Coastguard Boating Education, Surf Life Saving NZ, Swimming NZ and Plunket.

2. The provision of water survival competencies to children in primary schools with Water Skills for Life.

3. Māori drowning prevention.

4. Water safety in high risks areas of Auckland, Waikato and Bay of Plenty, and

5. Other projects that address high risk groups activities and environments, including innovation and value-adding opportunities.

WSNZ is grateful for the corporate sponsorship provided by commercial partner The Warehouse which supports Water Skills for Life, and from Protector Aluminium which supports water safety around the home and specifically promoting active adult supervision of the under-fives.

WSNZ’s work with Plunket will again be focused on the ‘safety message’ bathmat project which has been an effective tool in targeting under-five fatalities at bath time.

This project delivers slip preventing bathmats to parents to make bath time safer. Plunket nurses also talk to parents about the importance of constant active adult supervision of our under-fives around water at all times, and the mats themselves have the message printed on them.

Between 1993 and 2012 there were 31 preventable fatalities involving under-fives in the bath – an average of two a year.

The bathmat project was first funded in 2011, and between 2013 and 2018 the total number of preventable fatalities involving under-fives in the bath was three.

“This project has been an effective intervention in reducing fatalities of our under-fives at bath time, as we work to our goal of zero drownings of under-fives set in our Water Safety Sector Strategy 2020” says Jonty Mills.

“Every preventable drowning fatality is a tragedy for a family and a community, and the bathmat project shows that sustained targeted funding in the right areas can make a difference.”

Annually around 50,000 bathmats are delivered into the homes of new babies.

For media enquiries please call Ben Christie on 021770285 or email ben@watersafety.org.nz

*Preventable drowning fatalities are those where water safety sector intervention could have had an influence (for example where the victim was boating, swimming, diving) while non-preventable drowning deaths include events such as suicides, homicides and vehicle accidents (where water safety education and activity would not have prevented the death).

*Non-fatal drownings that result in a stay in hospital of 24 hours or longer are classified as ‘hospitalisations’.

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

New Reports: Flood Risk From Rain And Sea Under Climate Change

One report looks at what would happen when rivers are flooded by heavy rain and storms, while the other examines flooding exposure in coastal and harbour areas and how that might change with sea-level rise.

Their findings show that across the country almost 700,000 people and 411,516 buildings worth $135 billion are presently exposed to river flooding in the event of extreme weather events...

There is near certainty that the sea will rise 20-30 cm by 2040. By the end of the century, depending on whether global greenhouse gas emissions are reduced, it could rise by between 0.5 to 1.1 m, which could add an additional 116,000 people exposed to extreme coastal storm flooding. More>>



Gordon Campbell: On The Commerce Commission Fuel Report

The interim Commerce Commission report on the fuel industry will do nothing to endear the major oil companies to the New Zealand public... More>>


Emergency Govt Bill: Overriding Local Licensing For The Rugby

“It’s pretty clear some clubs are having difficulty persuading their district licensing committees to grant a special licence to extend their hours for this obviously special event, and so it makes sense for Parliament to allow clubs to meet a community desire." More>>


Leaving Contract Early: KiwiBuild Programme Losing Another Top Boss

Ms O'Sullivan began a six-month contract as head of KiwiBuild Commercial in February, but the Housing Ministry has confirmed she has resigned and will depart a month early to take up a new job. More>>


Proposed National Policy Statement: Helping Our Cities Grow Up And Out

“We need a new approach to planning that allows our cities to grow up, especially in city centres and around transport connections. We also have to allow cities to expand in a way that protects our special heritage areas, the natural environment and highly productive land." More>>


Ombudsman's Report: Ngāpuhi Elder 'Shocked' By Conditions At Ngawha Prison

A prominent Ngāpuhi elder is shocked to find inmates at Ngawha Prison are denied water and forced to relieve themselves in the exercise yard... Chief Ombudsman Peter Boshier has released a report highly critical of conditions at the Northland prison. More>>


Promises: Independent Election Policy Costing Unit A Step Closer

The creation of an entity to provide political parties with independent and non-partisan policy costings is a step closer today, according to Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Associate Finance Minister James Shaw. More>>


School's In: Primary And Intermediate Principals Accept New Offer

Primary and intermediate school principals have voted to accept a new settlement from the Ministry of Education, which includes entrenched pay parity with secondary principals. More>>


IPCA On 'Rawshark' Investigation: Multiple Police Failings In Hager Searches Confirmed

The Independent Police Conduct Authority has found that the Police's unlawful search of Nicky Hager's property in October 2014 resulted from an unwitting neglect of duty and did not amount to misconduct by any individual officer... More>>


Broadcasting Standards: Decisions On Coverage Of Mosque Attacks

The Authority upheld one of these complaints, finding that the use of extensive excerpts from the alleged attacker’s livestream video on Sky News New Zealand had the potential to cause significant distress to audiences in New Zealand, and particularly to the family and friends of victims, and the wider Muslim community. More>>




InfoPages News Channels