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Making New Zealand's roads safer

17 July 2006

Minister asks young people for help to make New Zealand's roads safer

Minister for Transport Safety Hon Harry Duynhoven today appealed to young people to play a greater role in coming up with ways to make New Zealand’s roads safer.

Mr Duynhoven was speaking at the first workshop in the See You There… Safe As! nation-wide programme of workshops put together by the National Road Safety Committee.

"While the number of people killed and injured has been steadily reducing over the years, there is no room for complacency. Young people feature disproportionately among those killed on New Zealand roads. 15-24 year olds are particularly at risk of what is largely preventable death," said Mr Duynhoven.

An important aim of the fifteen workshops to be held in major centres and some provincial areas is to improve the communication between the policy makers and the public to build a strong safety culture.

“Too many young people are dying on our roads and it seems that the messages about speed and alcohol are not getting through to them. I want to encourage young people to attend these workshops and tell us what they think needs to be done to influence them to use the road network more safely.

"While pictures of some horror crashes are shown on television and in the newspapers, hardly a week goes by without another of these tragic crashes occurring. Although the various agencies of government can regulate and enforce the road rules, in the end it comes down to individuals taking responsibility for their actions.

"Young people have so much to offer the world but sadly they can make poor decisions on the road which may result in terrible fatalities, " said Mr Duynhoven today.

The output from today's workshop will be put on the programme website www.safeas.govt.nz where it will be open for discussion. The output from all the workshops will be placed on the site and open to public discussion and debate before being collated and reported to Government.

ENDS

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