A campaign to donate qualified helmets and raising traffic safety awareness was launched in Hanoi on Monday by Asia Injury Prevention Foundation (AIP) in collaboration with the National Traffic Safety Committee and the Ministry of Education and Training.
The Helmets for Families program expands to Hanoi for the first time, after a two-year pilot run in four schools in Ho Chi Minh City and five schools in Tra Vinh Province, AIP said in a statement.
Under the program, health care company Abbott will donate more than 4,300 helmets to students and teachers in two primary schools in Hanoi and to first-grade students in nine schools in Ho Chi Minh City and Tra Vinh Province this academic year.
Through an exchange program that covers up to 4,100 subsidized helmets, parents can exchange their low quality helmets for high-quality standard helmets for 65 percent of the original price.
“Vietnamese people’s low investment in safety is demonstrated by the habit of using substandard helmets for themselves and their children,” said Nguyen Trong Thai, director of the National Traffic Safety Committee.
Greig Craft, AIP Foundation president, said that after piloting the program for two years, the helmet wearing rate increased to over 90 percent among children in target schools and more than 8,000 parents joined the standard helmet exchange program.
“The education and communication activities directly impacted parents, students, and the surrounding community by promoting quality helmet use,” he said.
According to the Hanoi Department of Education and Training, more than 85 percent students travel by motorbike but only 10 percent of them use helmets, most of which are substandard.