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Last modified: 29 Jul 2020 10:20am

Cartoon of children skating, scootering and walking

Schools, parents and children around the district have been taking up the active transport challenge, despite disruptions to this year’s Active Autumn from COVID-19.

The annual campaign run by the Council’s Road Safety Team, was due to run in May encouraging children to get walking, scooting or biking to school.

Despite the campaign not being able to go ahead as planned, Council Road Safety Coordinator Steph Hautler says it’s been awesome to see so many Selwyn learners using Active Transport to get back into their school routine after lock down.

“The benefits of Active Transport are huge for all of us both mentally and physically, which many of us have recently had time to discover over the lockdown period. Studies have also shown that physical activity before school not only boosts mental health but helps children concentrate for longer. Getting out walking, scooting or biking with your child reduces congestion, saves you money and increases your child’s road safety awareness.”

Parents are also encouraged to take part, by getting active and by talking with children about road safety,  she says. “Talk your child through the process of crossing the  road and how to wait for a safe gap between cars  before crossing.”

Drivers are encouraged to take extra care behind the wheel. With winter setting in and less hours of daylight it’s important for drivers to keep an eye out for children before and after school, especially with poor visibility in fog or sunstrike from low winter sun.

School travel safety tips:

  • Be bright be seen, ask your school for a safety vest.
  • Tackle the routes together talking about sneaky driveways and blind corners.
  • Get out and active together to reduce the chaos at the school gate.
  • Wear your helmets, this goes for caregivers too, young people are watching you!

Road safety resources for parents and children are available from Selwyn District Council by phoning 0800 SELWYN (735 996).