29 Aug 2006

Campaign on wearing motorcycle helmets under way in Cook Islands

6:08 am on 29 August 2006

A campaigner for compulsory motorcycle helmets for students at a local school in the Cook Islands is now hoping to take his cause nationwide at the forthcoming election.

Gus Meyer, of the Parents and Teachers Association chairman for Tereora College, says there is much support from the community, including a member of parliament, for the move to make the wearing of crash helmets compulsory.

He says up to 100 students ride motorcycles to school and are now affected by the new rule.

Mr Meyer says it is an important heath and safety issue, and it needs to be done by anyone riding a motorcycle - not just students at his school.

"We've certainly raised the awareness of wearing helmets, not just through the college campaigning, but also the Rotary and there's private individuals and the Road Safety Council. We've all been pushing for the wearing of helmets. And the elections as you know they weren't scheduled as you know, and it just seems a prime opportunity to hand it over to the lawmakers to update their current law."

Gus Meyer.

Under the Transport Act 1960 any person travelling in an excess of 40 kilometers per hour in a 60 kilometer per hour area on a motorbike as well as any passenger must wear a safety helmet.