18 Aug 2009

Schools keen to drive home anti-drink message

8:49 pm on 18 August 2009

Police in Tauranga say six of the area's eight secondary schools have accepted invitations to a drink-drive expo aimed at preventing teenage offending.

Recent statistics show the Bay of Plenty has one of the highest rates of youth drink-drive apprehensions in New Zealand for the second year in a row.

Forty-eight percent of drink-drivers in the Western Bay of Plenty are aged 15 to 24, even though they only make up 16% of drivers.

The expo at the Classic Flyers Air Museum at Tauranga Airport from Tuesday to Friday includes a guest speaker living with disabilities after a crash and a reformed drink-driver.

Sergeant Dan Roser says parents do not like to think of their children taking life-threatening risks, but poor decisions are often made when drivers are young and susceptible to peer pressure.

Mr Roser says the aim of the expo is to promote informative and honest discussion of the issues, rather than to shock.

Schools taking part are: Otumoetai College, Mt Manganui College, Tauranga Boys' College, Tauranga Girls' College, Aquinas College and Katikati College.

Parents and the public can also attend a free evening session from 7pm to 9pm on Thursday.