Whanganui/Taranaki Community Corrections partnered with emergency services, road safety agencies and a funeral director to deliver an innovative road safety programme to 66 community-based offenders in Whanganui on Saturday 17 May.

The programme was designed to tackle drink/drug-driving and encourage road safety using interactive demonstrations including a rock climbing wall, mock crash, a thought-provoking DVD about a horror crash in Hawke’s Bay, a seat belt simulator and walking a straight line while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.

Coralea Easther, Community Corrections District Manager Whanganui/Taranaki, says “The programme aims to educate people in relation to driving offences, to help them appreciate the consequences their actions may have. It also aims to empower them to make the right decisions in the future.”

David Francis, Whanganui Service Manager said "We are grateful for the support of Police, the Fire Service, St Johns, Horizons Regional Council’s road safety teams, Roadsafe Taranaki and Hawke’s Bay and Cleveland Funeral Home who all came together to make the day possible.”

Offenders from Whanganui, Hawera, Eltham, Stratford and the Waimarino area (Raetihi and Ohakune) attended and took part in the following activities:

  • climbing an eight metre high rock wall that used skills that relate to safe driving including thinking ahead, concentrating, working with others and restraint use
  • attempting an obstacle course, putting a key into a lock while wearing goggles that give the impression of being impaired by alcohol and drugs
  • hearing about a multiple fatality in Hawke's Bay and watching the related DVD (“Just another Saturday Night”) about the time a driver got behind the wheel and the aftermath
  • learning how to put out a kitchen fire
  • seeing what happens when a chair restraint (seatbelt simulator), moving at 12 kph, stops suddenly
  • hearing from Police about road safety and drink driving
  • learning basic first aid
  • seeing volunteers cut from a mock car crash
  • hearing from a funeral director about the process they follow at a fatal car crash.

Corrections is committed to reducing re-offending by 25% by 2017. By getting offenders to participate in programmes such as this, it’s encouraging them to weigh up risks and make sensible decisions that will help them to lead an offence-free life.

Community Corrections manages offenders to hold them to account to comply with their sentences and orders, reduce their likelihood of re-offending, minimise their risk to others, and help them become productive and contributing members of society.

Don't drink and fry demonstration

Offenders watching multiple fatality 'Just Another Saturday Night' DVD