Australian Governor-General Quentin Bryce presented helmets to nearly 1,000 pupils of Hanoi ’s Mai Dich primary school on May 10.

The activity was part of the “Helmets for Kids” programme, jointly organised by the Australian embassy and Asia Injury Prevention (AIP).

The Minister of Transport and Chairman of the National Traffic Safety Committee, Ho Nghia Dung, expressed thanks to the Australian government for its support to Vietnam with an effort to ensure greater traffic safety.

Bryce said the UN’s initiative of encouraging helmet wearing drew the participation of Australia , Vietnam and 90 other countries, which aims to halve road traffic casualties by 2020.

Together with Vietnam , Australia and other partners pledged to raise the percentage of children wearing helmets to 80 percent in the next three years, she said.

Vietnam reported 13,700 traffic accidents in 2010, killing 11,060 people and injuring 10,000 others.

Studies showed that wearing helmets will reduce the death toll by 42 percent and serious injuries by 69 percent.

Earlier, Governor-General Quentin Bryce and her husband laid a wreath and paid tribute to President Ho Chi Minh at his mausoleum and laid a wreath at the monument of fallen soldiers.

The Governor-General then left Hanoi to visit the central city of Da Nang to attend the 2011 world conference on drowning prevention./.