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ACC kicks off summer safety programme

ACC kicks off summer safety programme

ACC is taking the safety message to children, road users, swimmers and boaties in its biggest-ever summer injury prevention campaign.

Launching the ThinkSafe Summer Campaign, ACC Minister Ruth Dyson said people could enjoy themselves and be safe at the same time.

“While things we enjoy like swimming and boating are great fun, they can also be dangerous if people are careless. Swimming between the flags, always watching children near water, checking the marine forecast and wearing a life jacket when boating keep people safe without affecting their holiday enjoyment.”

Primary schools have already distributed more than 200,000 summer safety activity books to children aged 5-12, with a total of 300,000 likely to go before the high-profile safety blitz finishes at the end of January.

ACC chief executive Garry Wilson said a bit of planning could make the difference between a successful holiday and one with tragic consequences.

“Thinking safe doesn’t take a great effort. Things like checking tyres before heading off and planning breaks on the journey don’t take long, but they can make all the difference.”

Drivers could also reduce road deaths by keeping their speed down, he said. “An average 1.5kph drop in speeds on the road has contributed to a steady decline in the road toll, from more than 500 fatalities three years ago to less than 440 in the year ended in September.”

ThinkSafe Summer has two parts. The first focuses on the lead-up to Christmas and the distribution of activity books and materials.

Television commercials go to air from December 15 and continue until the end of January.

Hard-hitting water safety advertisements, which have aroused comment when previously screened, will resume from December 26. Advertisements and posters in this period will also remind people of the preparations they can make to reduce the risk of injury once they are on holiday. The campaign’s second phase, beginning on 20 December, will have a strongly regional flavour, focusing on the eight popular holiday destinations: Bay of Islands, Coromandel, Taupo/Rotorua, Tauranga, Nelson, Hawkes Bay Auckland and Queenstown.

The regional programme will be spearheaded by local ACC injury prevention consultants who will lead teams of five or six students at the major holiday destinations.

The students will distribute the activity books, a million stickers and other safety materials including 250,000 posters, to holiday-makers.

Ms Dyson congratulated everyone involved in ThinkSafe Summer including BP, the Automobile Association, McDonalds, the Pharmacy Guild, the Motor Trade Association, Water Safety NZ, the Interislander and WaterSafe Auckland.

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