Thousands of young children and their families will get the peace of mind of driveway safety improvements to their Kāinga Ora homes this financial year.

A total of 998 more homes will get improvements through the programme which focuses on separating child play areas from driveways in properties where there are young children under the age of 5.

Kāinga Ora Chief Operating Officer Paul Commons says helping our tenants and their families stay safe is a big part of what we do as the country’s largest landlord.

This investment is worth around $1.6 million but Mr Commons says you cannot put a price on ensuring peace of mind for our tenants, knowing their children are safe.

Nearly half of the of the driveway safety improvements this financial year will be in Auckland with 461 homes having $800,000 spent on items such as self-closing gates, speed humps, speed restriction signs and other safety measures.

Other centres that will receive significant spending include 98 properties in Christchurch with improvements worth more than $155,000 and Hamilton (91 properties, $150,000) while smaller centres don’t miss out with places like Lower Hutt City ($47,000), Marlborough District ($35,000) and Whangarei District ($19,000) also getting improvements.

Our work in this space has benefitted thousands of tenants already and has also been welcomed by SafeKids Aotearoa.

Director of Safekids Aotearoa, Melissa Wilson, also encouraged all homeowners and tenants to be extra careful around their driveways this summer.

"Many driveway run overs occur during summer months when families are busy, out of routine and spending time outdoors", said Melissa.

“It’s critical you know where your children are and that they are supervised before you get into your car. Make it a habit to take a walk around your car and make sure there are no children playing behind or near your car. Taking steps to keep your kids’ play areas separate from your driveway is vital.

"Physical barriers between those spaces such as fences are also something we support. But most of all remember ‘know where they are’ and check for kids before you turn the key.”

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Page updated: 27 January 2020