Old4New van notches up 100,000km and 20,000 lifejackets

Wearing a lifejacket is the most effective way to prevent drowning.

Minister for Roads Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey today announced the Old4New life jacket programme had exchanged more than 20,000 old lifejackets for new ones, spreading the ‘wear a lifejacket’ message.

“The Old4New van has travelled to more than 500 towns, covering 100,000 kilometres throughout NSW to offer upgraded lifejackets at a discounted price and educate the community about modern, comfortable lifejackets.” Mrs Pavey said.

“Wearing a lifejacket is the most effective way to prevent drowning and people all across NSW have really embraced this program.

“The 20,000 lifejackets that have been provided is not just a number. Each lifejacket supplied represents a friend or family member who is now more likely to wear a lifejacket while boating and come home safe.”

The Old4New lifejacket exchange program has delivered strong results, with lifejacket wear rates up more than 400 per cent compared with 10 years ago.

The ‘wear a lifejacket’ message was also spread by footy legend and fishing fanatic Andrew ‘E.T’ Ettingshausen, with Finn the talking fish, who reminded Andrew to properly care for and maintain his lifejacket.  
“By teaming up with ET and Finn, we’ve managed to put a humorous spin on this important safety message,” Mrs Pavey said. 

Andrew Ettingshausen said he was proud to be a part of a campaign that’s all about saving lives.

“Teaming up with Finn the talking fish was fun, but the crux of his message is something all us boaties not only need to listen to, but do as well,” Mr Ettingshausen said.

“Sadly, 8 out of 10 people who drown in NSW while boating are not wearing a lifejacket, highlighting the importance of safety for all water enthusiasts regardless of age and experience.”

“For more information on Old4New visit the Centre for Maritime Safety website or the NSW Maritime Facebook page.