Safe District Taupo, New Zealand International Safe Community #186
Taupo Centre Mountains and Lake
Taupo is the 13th ISC in New Zealand and 186 in the world. Site visit 21st April, Designation ceremony 28th May 2010.
Country: New Zealand
Number of inhabitants: 33,500 (estimated 2007)
Programme started year: 2006
International Safe Communities Network Membership: 2010
Full application available: www.safecommunities.org.nz/sc/taupo
Name: Hellmuth Hartung - CommunityProjects Officer
Institution: Taupo District Council
Address: 72 Lake Terrace
Private Bag 2005
Taupo Mail Centre
Country: New Zealand
Phone +64 7 3760606: Fax: +64 7 3769310
In the Taupo District there are a range of initiatives that have been put in place by the community covering safety promotion activities:
For the age group
- Children 0-14 years:
Focus is on restraint though car seat rental outlets. NZ Safety Week special lectures to interested parties, including statistics, regulations and enforcement, to ensure message is getting out there to reduce the number of injuries caused by road crashes to unrestrained children.
Schools and Kindergartens, Play Centre and Day Care premises have routine fire drills, road safety measures in place.
Most primary schools operate crossing patrols with road crossing procedures including bus and vehicle safety processes. Walking School Bus, cycle strategies, road traffic speed indicators near schools, wearing of cycle helmets being compulsory, are but some of the measures invoked in the Taupo District (Taupo, Turangi, and Mangakino plus rural areas)
- Youth 15-24 years:
The Parent Pack (tools for teenage years) produced by the Taupo Youth Access to Alcohol Committee (YATA) has been released and well received in the community. The pack covers helpful hints and pointers on parenting of teenagers (wants of both) parties, drugs, (Cannabis to Methamphetamine) Alcohol, suspension from school, bullying, violence and resource links for parents and teenagers.
Youth Council operates in this district, giving youth the opportunity to participate in decisions for them and to have input. We encourage Safe Transport alternatives; have a very proactive Community Projects Officer (youth) within the Council, with encouragement for music, arts, sports and recreation initiatives.
Graffiti elimination, health awareness and projects aimed at meeting the needs of our youth are constantly being updated and implemented.
We have a new outdoor theatre park for concerts and family recreation
Adults 25-64 years:
A new “Taupo Safer Communities Trust” been formed with focus aimed at Central Business Area, on matters pertaining to safety, street lighting, road and footpath safety against injury, property protection, and other crime prevention measures to make Taupo District “safe” for community and visitors alike.
A safety fence has been installed along the cliff tops on the lake front with reminder notices of the danger in going too close.
Road Safes measures are updated frequently, and areas of risk or injury at the home or workplace are monitored.
Collaboration and coordination of safety concerns for groups and individuals is to the fore. Being an event destination for all types of organizations, sports, and hobbies, we have a very large influx of visitors to our district, every weekend, so any measures to make this a safer injury free area are positively implemented for our welcome visitors.
Older Adults 65+ years:
Taupo Mobility Access Reference Group has been formed to concentrate on issues such as mobility scooter access, footpath and road crossing easements, for safety and visibility. This includes special parking places at Supermarkets and in the Central Business Area.
Crime Prevention Neighborhood Watch, volunteer groups also contribute to the safety of our older citizens.
Regular classes are being held for exercise and balance with a view to eliminating our major cause of injury/accident – falls.
In the following Environments:
Parenting groups meet for support for young, new born, and elderly. Injury prevention information is available for safety in and around the home, and the Fire Service frequently reassure the community with reminders on smoke alarms (day-light saving change over) and at other holiday periods.
Very cooperative and proactive Police Road Safety Team with big input from Land Transport, offering a variety of safety measures including targets to reduce death and injury on our roads. Changes of speed limits in some cases with implementation of National Strategies including:
Speed Indicator trailers near schools,
Student THINK programme,
KEEP LEFT initiative,
Walk to School,
Intersection Safety Campaign,
Bike to work, and
Cycle safety are but some of the proactive happenings in our community.
Health and Safety issues are foremost in nearly all business and workplaces.
Comprehensive training on all is a pre-requisite for new employees and refresher courses for existing staff.
Road safety at Construction sites.
Town Centre Taupo on safety issues and shop-safe in the central business district.
Private investigators for shop-lifting prevention and hospitality sector police their own domain.
Nearly all pre-school places have a wide range of injury prevention programmes for class room and playground.
School patrols have been in vogue for 70 plus years giving an aura of safety around traffic a children arriving at school.
Walking School Buses are assisting in keeping children safe in Turangi, Mangakino and Taupo.
ACC have developed a comprehensive web site on sport injury and prevention. The SportSmart 10 point Injury Prevention Plan, associated links and resources are obviously referred to by the various sporting clubs, codes, groups and teams in Taupo District. By identifying their own particular sport, handy prevention tips are promulgated in simple steps to safeguard, player, administrator, and spectator alike.
As we move through the accreditation process, sports injury and prevention will be addressed and monitored.
Safe venues are being developed like the new outdoor theatre in Taupo offering alcohol free facility for entertainment, music, recreation and art.
Parks and Reserves are being made friendlier user.
New sub-divisions green belts having visual presence in design for safety.
To work in with groups and organizations in the development and implementation of safety factors to improve perceptions of safety. New Sub-division planning now accentuates safety in curb crossing, visibility, height restrictions, lighting green belts etc, giving the community a sense of well being and feeling of safety.
Fixing of under verandah lighting in towns removal of vegetation allowing visuality again leading to a sense of belonging.
Swimming pool fencing compliance.
Violence prevention: (intentional injuries)
We have a family violence network group in place (VIN) with membership from various Government agencies and other organizations meeting on a monthly basis aimed at the reduction of family violence and to provide support for families.
Taupo District Police have adopted a very strong approach to this including taking one person away from the home or place of the domestic incident. (Thus increased number of reported offences).
All statutory agencies involved with alcohol are working closer to reduce the incidents of crime, assaults etc, including public place violence.
Suicide prevention: (self inflicted injuries)
A National Strategy has been released and our community is working with existing agencies that provide support and training in this area.
Programmes aimed at “high risk-groups”
Safe Transport, road use and alcohol safety programmes aimed at youth.
Visitors to our district are reminded of safety issues especially in looking after personal property at tourist spots.
Meantime new residents are offered safety and injury prevention information to assist them in settling into the district.
Surveillance of injuries:
Taupo State of the District – Reference Report 2007 has provided some of our statistical data. We are continually seeking updated data on injury, road crashes, and crime trends and will continue to monitor and evaluate the safety measures being used.
Injury motor vehicle crashes per 10,000 of population has been rising since 2000 with 2006 being the worst. Fatalities in our area exceed the National average and our SH1 road record is not good. NZ Police and Land Transport are working hard to reduce. The new “KEEP LEFT” campaign started on 29 September 2008 with emphasis on capturing on camera the offenders wandering over the centre line.
We have a disproportionate level of road trauma in our district, (HIGH) and 70% of those involved are local drivers. 51% of crashes are attributed to failing to keep left. 33 Bill Boards have been erected at “hot spots” and at the entrances and exits of towns.
Latest update from ACC on hospitalization in Taupo District (2007) shows that we are on par with the national average with again the majority of cases being falls, followed by Traffic Accidents, although in some age bands these are reversed. Fractures are by far the most common injury in Taupo, with males out numbering females and European accounting for some 61% and 31% Maori.
Numbers per year:
In 2007 hospital admissions were 392, a diverse cross-section with:
Majority stayed one day
Falls accounting for 120 of admissions
Traffic 84 admissions.
Fractures topped list of injury with 145,
95 of the injuries occurred in the home setting.
Population base: 2007 estimated 33500 in Taupo District
Started year: 2008
Produced information material, pamphlets:
Parent pack, numerous safety and injury prevention brochures including wide variety of youth related strategies, alcohol, driving and health measures.
Violence Intervention Network Group has published community cards for each of the towns, and the “It’s not OK” campaign brochures are in demand.
The new KEEP LEFT campaign is taking off with plenty of publicity in paper and over radio.
Attended 17th International Safe Communities Conference at Christchurch in October 2008.
2008 Workshop for the International Safe Community Network in New Zealand, 23rd October 2008
Professions: Full-time Project Manager (permanent)
Organisation: Taupo District Council
Specific intersectoral leadership group: Taupo Safe District Coalition including: (ACC, Lakes District Health Board, NZ Police, Town Centre Taupo, NZ Fire Service and Taupo District Council)
General public health/health promotion group: ACC. Lakes District Health Board.