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Life Jacket Campaign Aimed At Saving Lives

MEDIA RELEASE
16 October 2002

Life Jacket Campaign Aimed At Saving Lives

A total of 81 New Zealanders died in recreational boating accidents in the three years up until the end of September, and three quarters of those would still be alive if they had been wearing lifejackets.

That is why the Maritime Safety Authority is doing all it can to get across the message that lifejackets are life savers and must be carried on all boats. That is the focus of its summer campaign ‘Stay on Top’, which starts with a splash at Auckland’s Viaduct Basin tomorrow.

Ninety seven percent of the people who died were men, most of them in the prime of life, aged between 21 and 50. Sixty percent were Pakeha New Zealanders, but a high proportion (27%) were Maori.

The largest number of boating deaths occurred in the Auckland region, but other places with a high number of boating fatalities were Bay of Plenty, Northland and Otago.

The Maritime Safety Authority’s summer campaign is sponsored by TelstraClear, and includes television advertisements based on the real life stories of some of the New Zealanders who have lost their loved ones through boating accidents, where life jackets were not worn.

ENDS

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