Services > Vehicle Restraints
Preliminary crash data indicates that from the 1st Decmber 2015 to 31st January 2016, 22 deaths were associated with a restraint not being worn.
2015 - 2016 * Deaths = 64, No restraint worn = 22
2014 - 2015 * Deaths = 48, No restraint worn = 11
Seat belts save lives - it's that simple
With double the number of road deaths this summer associated with a seat belt not being worn, Police are co-ordinating an operation focusing on getting road users to buckle up.
Initial crash data indicates that over the summer period (1 December 2015 to 31 January 2016), 22 deaths were associated with a restraint not being worn. For that same period the year before, there were 11 road deaths associated with not wearing a seat belt.
“This operation is about having fewer victims on our roads, not issuing tickets. Seat belts save lives – it’s that simple.” says Superintendent Steve Greally, National Manager of Road Policing.
“It’s disappointing and frustrating that in 2016 we still have people not taking the extra few seconds to protect themselves by doing something as simple as buckling up, especially when everyone knows it saves lives.”
Ministry of Transport data shows that wearing a seat belt reduces your chance of death or serious injury in a crash by 40 percent. Regardless of whether you sit in the front or the back seat, the risk of serious or fatal injury is virtually the same.
The nationwide operation will run the week starting 29 February 2016, and while the main focus is on restraint use, Police will also be checking that drivers are not using their cell phones while driving, and everyone stopped will be breath tested.
Annual figures show a sudden increase in deaths associated with non-restraint use. There were around 57 deaths per year associated with non-restraint use from 2012 to 2014. In 2015 that figure jumped to 92.
“No family should ever have to bury a child or family member whose death could have been avoided by being properly restrained while in the car, says Mr Greally.
“Seat belts – it’s a no-brainer. The two seconds that it takes to fasten your seat belt may just save your life.”
Media Contact: Rachel Purdom, firstname.lastname@example.org
Safety Belts and Restraints
Information about the correct use of child restraints:
- Since November 2013 all child passengers up to 7 years of age, have to be restrained in an appropriate child restraint.
- Approved child restraints include:
- infant restraints for young babies (often called baby capsules)
- restraints for older babies, toddlers and preschool children (often called car seats)
- booster seats for preschool and school-aged children
- child safety harnesses (used with or without a booster seat) for preschool and school-aged children.
- The driver is responsible for ensuring that all passengers under the age of 15 are appropriately restrained.
- The rules for child restraint use are for one purpose - to stop children from being killed or seriously injured when travelling in vehicles. The death or serious injury of any child is a tragedy, and even more so when it can be prevented with the use of simple and widely available equipment like child restraints.
‘Belt up Wairarapa wide’ - Everybody-every trip-every time
“Safety belts save lives-there can be no argument”, says Bruce Pauling, Manager of Wairarapa Road Safety Council.
As part of national Road Safety Week 16 – 22 May, the council is highlighting the absolute necessity of everyone travelling on our Wairarapa roads being restrained in the appropriate manner.
‘Everybody, every trip, every time! There are no excuses for drivers or their passengers to be in a vehicle unrestrained.” Mr Pauling, who saw the tragic results of crashes time and again over 30 years of road Policing, still cannot get his head around people risking personal injury, by ignoring the quickest and easiest safety action they can take, after hopping into their cars.
“People make mistakes and crashes happen, but we know that by simply wearing a safety belt, your chance of death or serious injury reduces by over 40%, no matter where you are seated in the vehicle.
Occupants sustain horrendous injuries from impacting the inside of their vehicles with crash forces more than 20 times their weight. It doesn’t have to happen.”
2015 saw 92 deaths associated with non-restraint use in NZ. This is a tragic ‘spike’ from the previous 5 years and preventable Pauling says:
“The national front seat restraint compliance rate is around 98%, but appears to be much lower in Wairarapa after recent local surveys. Of more concern are children not properly restrained in restraints appropriate to their age and size.”
A 2013 law change means all children up to 7 yrs have to be in an approved child restraint.
“Drivers are responsible for ensuring all passengers under 15 yrs are restrained in a seatbelt or approved child restraint. The little ones are entitled to be safe and not become missiles in the event of a crash which can happen even at low speeds.”
The Road Safety Council invited Police and Wellington Free Ambulance to reinforce the safety belt messages.
Nigel Watson, Wairarapa paramedic and field operations Manager stated “A lot of injuries from crashes we attend are preventable….a simple mistake can change a life forever. We want you to see your family every night. Please drive carefully and ALWAYS wear your safety belts.”
Acting Sergeant of Wairarapa Road Policing Shayne Nolan stated “ It’s more about having fewer crash victims from no restraints being worn, than more tickets. However, we will be issuing notices for $150 per restraint breach whenever we stop a vehicle.”
For further information on child restraints contact Wairarapa Road Safety Council -and remember:
‘Belt up-Wairarapa wide……...everbody-every trip-every time’.
Road Safety Council manager Bruce Pauling said many Wairarapa drivers were putting themselves and others at risk by driving non-legal vehicles and breaching their driver licence conditions.
The former police officer, with 30 years' enforcement experience, said statistics for tickets issued across Wairarapa for 2014 were "worrying". Some 2094 tickets were issued for vehicles that had faults, no warrant of fitness or were not up to WOF standard. More than 1900 tickets had been issued to either unlicensed drivers or to drivers breaching graduated licence conditions.
"Licence conditions and restrictions, such as a supervisor, not carrying passengers and a curfew, are placed around the novice driver to ensure they graduate to become a competent, safe and responsible road user." As of last year, five-year time limits were applied to learner and restricted licence holders. This means if a driver has not progressed to the next licence stage within five years then they will become unlicensed and risk large fines and demerit points. They will be required to start the whole process over.
Mr Pauling said although keeping a car up to a safe standard could be expensive, it was important to do so. "It is essential that the car you are driving and transporting your whanau and friends in has been checked by a qualified mechanic and is seen to be compliant and safe." He said it was a good idea for people to regularly carry out five-minute checks to ensure their vehicle still met warrant of fitness standard.
People looking to buy a new or used vehicle should look at the available safety features and ratings and decide on the safest car for their budget. Car safety ratings were based on over 7.5 million vehicles in police-reported crashes in New Zealand and Australia from 1987 to 2013. The Australia New Car Assessment Programme (Ancap) star-rated system was based on the results of thousands of laboratory controlled crashes. Mr Pauling said people should base their consumer choice on safety first, followed by other features such as brand and colour of vehicle.
"You could be surprised that the car you have in mind with the flash rims and stereo will not perform that safely or provide enough occupant protection in a serious crash." Drivers needed to look after each other on the roads.
-The government website www.rightcar.govt.nz has safety information on most new and used vehicles.
Anyone with a learner licence who does not have anyone to act as a driving supervisor, or has no access to a legal car to practice, or needs more advice, can contact Bruce Pauling on 06 929 7425 or go to www.wairsc.org.nz
Whiti Te Ra 2015
A family event and a chance for the community to come together to showcase and celebrate. "Whiti te ra" means "let the sun shine" and carries the bi-line "because the sun always rises in the east!" It is also the closing line of the famous haka Ka mate, Ka mate and has the connotation of "take a look at me and what I have to offer!"
Wairarapa Road Safety Council joined in on the fun by bringing so road safety messages and an element of fun to encompass the day. HUGE thank you to Jeremy & the team at Stihl Hire Shop Masterton for the use of the generator. Bruce was a happy chappy being able to run the Seatbelt demonstrator whilst Holly had some fun in the Netball courts with Pedal Ready making a cycle obstacle course with some of the kids. Thanks Clare & Sean for coming over on a Saturday & to Tranzit for the cycle trailer!! Here are a few pics of what we were up to.
For more info & to see what else went on at Whiti Te Ra, check out the facebook page! A wonderful day with so many good people sharing good times with the community.