Free bicycle lights for school pupils

Duntroon School pupils (from left) Joseph Thompson,  Connor Sullivan, Carl Alegado and Hanna...
Duntroon School pupils (from left) Joseph Thompson, Connor Sullivan, Carl Alegado and Hanna Alegado show off their new bike lights and bike safety certificates. With them are Duntroon School Principal Bev Conlan (back left) and Sport Waitaki's Kate Cartwright. Photo supplied.
School-age cyclists in North Otago are to get free bicycle lights under a new Sport Waitaki and Waitaki District Council safety initiative.

As part of the "Lights on Bikes" campaign, 200 sets of front and rear bicycle lights are to be distributed to children throughout the district, but Waitaki District Council Road Safe Co-ordinator Elton Crane said that with the darker winter months, the campaign sought to remind cyclists it was compulsory to have lights on both the front and rear of bicycles when street lights were on.

It was vital cyclists could be seen in winter, Mr Crane said.

"This initiative has been funded by the NZTA under the 'Street Smart' programme, which addresses road-safety issues and active transport in schools.

"The intention is to get around as many local schools as possible and reward the students who have cycled with a new set of bike lights.

"It is our way of supporting the guys who get up early and bike to school in the cold."

Sport Waitaki co-ordinator Kate Cartwright said seven schools had already been visited as part of the initiative, and the response from parents, pupils and teachers had been "very enthusiastic".

"The response has been really good. There are not a whole lot of bike riders out there, but the need for this is pretty clear and we are going straight to them."

A total of 23 schools across the district would benefit from the project, Miss Cartwright said.



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