7th February 2007
School Principals support Police speed campaign
The NZ Police road safety campaign which aims to get drivers to slow down near schools is being supported by school principals. The principals appear in a television advertisement which marks the introduction of the police programme on 7th February, the start of the school year.
Superintendent Dave Cliff, New Zealand Police National Road Policing Manager says that the campaign to raise awareness about the dangers of speeding round schools which was introduced last year, has been boosted even further this year.
"We cannot rest while we have people who still speed where children are walking to and from school. Children are so vulnerable," he said.
"They are small, often easily distracted and unpredictable. Anybody driving near a school has to have their wits about them, really concentrate and always expect the unexpected. You are in a better position to react if or when something happens,if you are not speeding."
"We have heard some harrowing stories from school principals and they have been prepared to speak out because they do not want any school or family to have to go through what they have been through, "he said.
From February 7th 2007, NZ Police will strictly enforce the speed limit within 250 metres of the boundaries of all schools and preschools. Drivers who exceed the speed limit by more than 4km /hr will be ticketed.
In the last five years over 1200 child pedestrians have been killed or injured during school terms. In the vicinity of schools, particularly during the high-risk morning and afternoon periods, a significant danger is posed to school children by speeding drivers and it is considered that a lower enforcement tolerance is critical to reducing child pedestrian casualties.
The enforcement will be on a risk basis. This means that in general, speed enforcement and speed camera deployment times will be between 7.30 - am and 6 pm week days. This is when the majority of children are arriving or leaving school. However, it may also occur at other high-risk times when the school is being used for events such as sports events, galas and other school-based activities.
This programme, endorsed by the Ministers of Police and Road Safety extends the "Speed Kills Kids" campaign introduced last year and is intended to raise awareness of the need to take care when driving near schools.
It is supported by a national advertising campaign including television advertisements featuring school principals, billboards, radio and advertising in all national newspapers.
The campaign will be launched by the Minister of Police, Annette King at Miramar Central Central School, Wellington on 7th February when the majority of primary and a number of secondary schools return for the year.
For further information: www.police.govt.nz
Communications Manager - Road Policing
There's also a media photo opportunity to launch the national campaign on Wednesday, 7 February, between 8.15am and 8.45am, at Miramar Central School, Park Road, Miramar. The Ministers of Police and Transport will be present, along with Superintendent Dave Cliff, National Road Policing Manager, and other police staff.