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The 2017 KARI City Origin team will visit Oberon High School in the lead-up to the Country-City clash in Mudgee next weekend to deliver important road safety messages after two former students tragically lost their lives on the road last year.

As part of a new community partnership announced today (Thursday, 27 April) with Transport for NSW, Brad Fittler’s side will make the heart-warming visit to Oberon’s only high school next Thursday (4 April) on their way to Mudgee.

NSWRL today joined forces with the NSW Government, NRL and CRL at Rugby League Central to announce the historic partnership, launching the ‘Knock-On effect’ campaign, which gets underway next week ahead of the final Country-City match in Mudgee (7 May).

The ‘Knock-On effect’ campaign encourages people to make smarter and safer choices behind the wheel and highlights the harrowing effects road trauma is having on local communities, especially in country NSW, where of the 384 lives lost on NSW roads in 2016, 254 people were killed on country roads.

NSWRL Chief Executive Officer, David Trodden said the partnership would enable Rugby League to deliver important road safety messages, in particular in NSW country towns.

“Many areas in country NSW have played home to some of the game’s biggest names,” Mr Trodden said.

“The opportunity to give back to these communities through a road safety program like this one is extremely rewarding and we are delighted to be a part of announcing this campaign and important message in the lead-up to the Country-City match in Mudgee next Sunday.”

NRL Chief Executive Officer Todd Greenberg commended the NSW Government on their increased efforts and commitment in aiming to reduce the number of road fatalities across the State.

“As a game and as a community, we know the devastating effects that any injury, turmoil or loss of life can have at any level of our game,” Mr Greenberg said.

“Wherever we can use a collective voice of the NRL, NSWRL and CRL to persuade change for the better and in this case, to remind people to be safe whilst driving, we’re only too happy to be part of a change for good.”

The announcement comes as the Government prepares to tackle road safety in the country head on, with the sporting partnership being lauded as the first of many initiatives expected to be rolled out this year.

NSW Minister for Roads Melinda Pavey said: “Someone is killed or seriously injured in a crash on our roads every 85 minutes – about the same time it takes to play an elite game of Rugby League.”

“The sad reality is that you’re five times more likely to be killed in the country than in our big cities, highlighting the fact that we have a problem in regional and country NSW and as a Government we’re committed to doing everything we can to save lives on our road.

“When our locals go to the footy the action stays on the field and on the sideline, not on the roads.”

For more information about the partnership and the Government’s commitment to bringing down the country road toll, click here.

Acknowledgement of Country

New South Wales Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.