Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


High rate of driveway deaths avoidable

High rate of driveway deaths avoidable

Children being run over in driveways brings tragedy to New Zealand families at a higher rate than any other western nation.

This is one of the findings of a study by University of Waikato public policy honours student Brendan The research project, funded by the Child Injury Prevention Foundation of New Zealand, was supervised by the University’s Senior Lecturer in Policy Dr Maxine Campbell.

The research evaluates town planning policies affecting the renovation and/or erection of domestic residences with a view to determining whether they are consistent with existing knowledge and best practice initiatives designed to minimise accidental injuries to children on driveways, or whether other factors take precedence over child safety considerations.

“I’ve been very surprised at how little legislation there is around driveway safety,” says Brendan.

“The priorities of the Resource Management Act are on environmental sustainability and in recognising heritage and cultural areas. The District Plan is designed to comply with the RMA, but neither really prioritise child safety.”

He says houses need to be built with garages at the front of the property, and that long driveways should be avoided.

“We may need to rethink how we live. With more townhouses being built with less outdoor recreational space, where do children end up playing? On driveways. This is something we’ve identified as being a real problem.

"We believe that harm-prevention strategies should focus on making existing areas safer given the realities of intensification and that city councils inherit (problematic) built environment legacies, such as the quarter-acre paradise."

The project reviewed existing child safety literature in regard to driveway run overs, along with local and central government policies and publications.

The research found that children under five are over-represented in fatalities and injuries on driveways relative to comparable nations such as Australia, Canada and the United Kingdom. On average there are two incidents per month in New Zealand.

The literature indicates that the built environment has a significant impact on child safety. Reducing the length of driveways, preventing the driveway from being on the property boundary, introducing some form of separation between the driveway and dwelling/outdoor areas, having dedicated play areas for children, and decreasing the number of driveways that are shared between different properties will decrease the incidence of child driveway runovers.

Dr Campbell says there is plenty of child safety best practice advice put forward in academic “The message is very consistent and there is a clear message about what is wrong. It shows there is plenty of room for improvement.”

Among its recommendations, the study endorses the continuation and extension of the practice of reduced speed limits and traffic calming measures in residential streets, and the inclusion of child safety as a high level objective in policy design.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Minister of Finance: Plan Shows $100 Billion Infrastructure Projects

Finance Minister Bill English has today launched the Government’s Ten Year Capital Intentions Plan (CIP) which shows a pipeline of $100.9 billion worth of infrastructure projects over the next decade. More>>


Werewolf: Safe Landings Gordon Campbell on the safety challenge to the Wellington runway extension.

The safety-related legal challenge revolves around the size of the 90 metre long Runway End Safety Area (RESA) being proposed for the runway extension. More>>


Environment Commissioner: We Need To Work Together On Climate Change And Farming

“The debate around agricultural emissions and the ETS has been polarised for too long,” said the Commissioner. “But the ETS is not the only way forward – there are other things that can be done.” More>>


NZ Super Fund: Seeking To Put A Market Price On Climate Change

Oct. 19 (BusinessDesk) - The New Zealand Superannuation Fund says it will devise a set of rules to assess investment winners and losers under climate change, a strategy that could rule out fossil fuels or producers such as current portfolio member Exxon ... More>>


Rejuvenation: Parata Will Not Contest 2017 Election

Education Minister and National List MP Hekia Parata has today announced that she will not be contesting the next election. She advised the Prime Minister of her decision earlier this year. More>>

Prisons Grow: Government Approves Plans For Increased Prison Capacity

Despite significant progress in reducing crime the number of prisoners has increased faster than projected. This is because the proportion of offenders charged with serious crimes has risen, meaning more people are being remanded in custody and serving more of their sentences in prison. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Plastic Bag Activism, And Street Harassment

Amusing to see the Act Party experiencing another outbreak of young fogey-ism. What has aroused the ire of Act Leader David Seymour this time is the introduction of a Greens private members bill to the ballot process, calling for a 15 cents levy on plastic bags to reduce pollution. More>>


Unclear Weapons: US Navy Ship Cleared To Visit NZ For Navy's 75th

United States Navy ship, the USS Sampson, has been given clearance to visit New Zealand next month by Prime Minister John Key... “The process for considering the visit by the USS Sampson is the same as that used for all ships attending the International Naval Review." More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news