INDEPENDENT NEWS

No Excuses For Speeding Near Schools

Published: Fri 26 Jan 2007 03:18 PM
No Excuses For Speeding Near Schools
Every year hundreds of families pay a terrible price when a child is injured or killed because someone thought it was OK to ignore the speed limit around a school.
Now school principals and teachers who have experienced these tragedies first-hand are speaking out as part of a new television advertising campaign. Their messages are clear, and their words are poignant:
“What can you say to Mum and Dad when they’ve just lost their lovely little child? There are no words that are adequate.”
Brian Baker, Lincoln Primary School, Christchurch
“Just think – how would it change your life if you hit a small child on a crossing? Your life’s not going to be the same.”
Peter Doyle, Rotorua Intermediate School, Rotorua
“You have to live with that for the rest of your life, if you’ve taken out a little human being just because you were rushing off somewhere.”
Lynda Bouzaid, Newlands Intermediate School, Wellington
“You know there’s a school there. Slow down and obey the speed limit. Please.”
Peter Simpson, Belfast School, Christchurch
The new ads go to air this Sunday (28 January), featuring a montage of principals and other staff from primary and intermediate schools around the country discussing incidents which have occurred outside their schools.
The ads support stepped up Police enforcement in school zones, aimed at reducing speeds and protecting children.
In the five years from 2001 to 2005, a total of 1,524 pedestrians and cyclists between the ages of five and 14 were injured on our roads during school terms and a further 24 were killed.
When a child is struck by a vehicle, a few kilometres over the speed limit can literally be the difference between life and death – a child hit by a vehicle travelling at 60 km/h has only a 15% chance of survival while a child struck at 50 km/h has a 55% chance of survival.
At 60 km/h, it will take 50 metres to stop from the time you see a child on the road, while at 50 km/h it will take only 41 metres to stop.
Land Transport NZ Chief Executive Wayne Donnelly said the new ad campaign was part of the organisation’s commitment to promote safe and sustainable transport for all New Zealanders, including child pedestrians.
“If we tolerate speeding, especially around schools, our children will continue to get hurt. If you speed around schools you will be caught.
ENDS

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