Road patrol parade is street smart

9 September 2019

Wellington primary schools will hit the streets to celebrate road safety in the annual Orange Day Parade this Friday.

Orange Day Parade 2017 outside Parliament

More than half of the capital’s primary schools will be represented in the parade from Parliament to the Michael Fowler Centre to celebrate and acknowledge the hard work of school traffic safety teams.

Wellington School Community Officer Aaron Dann, who trains road patrollers, says students play a vital role in improving safety around their schools and communities.

“The student patrols are out rain or shine making sure their peers are safe on their commute to and from school – and reminding drivers to be alert and adhere to road safety rules when passing schools.

“There’ll be about 1200 students from 34 schools in the parade, but we’re keen to see everyone come along and show their support as we raise awareness and acknowledge the great job they do,” adds Aaron.

The Orange Day Parade will work its way along Lambton Quay and Willis Street, then down Mercer and Wakefield Street to a celebration at the Michael Fowler Centre hosted by Wellington City Council.

The students will be competing for prizes such as best banner, best presence in the parade and the hotly contested best school patrol – so expect a lot of colour and chanting.

Orange Day is a joint collaboration between the Council and the NZ Police, and is supported by Mana Coach Services and Pak'n’Save, Kilbirnie.

When: 

Parade 10am – 11am, ceremony to be finished by 12 noon, Friday 13 September

Where: 

March begins 10am at Parliament, a rolling road closure will be provided by Police as the students parade down Lambton Quay, onto Willis Street, through Mercer Street to Wakefield Street and Michael Fowler Centre.

Award ceremony taking place in the Michael Fowler Centre, Mayor Justin Lester will be handing out the prizes for best banners and best presence in the parade.

Who’s in the Parade?

  • 1200 road patrollers plus another 150 parents/teachers,
  • Wellington City Council staff (including two zebras) and Wellington Police

Why:

New Zealand is unique in that it is one of the few countries where children provide road patrol duties. The children are volunteers who operate in all weathers throughout the school year. Most Councils and School Community Officers organise some sort of celebration for the road patrollers; in Wellington we have been putting on the “Orange Day Parade” for over 20 years and other Councils including Tauranga City Council have developed their own parade from our example. This also allows the Wellington public to be aware of the scale of volunteers involved in providing this vital service for our community.