Crocs. The perfect summer shoe, if you’re at the beach or by the BBQ.
But schools – like Wānaka Primary in central Otago – are saying no more to the polyethylene (plastic) footwear and its charms.
“We had a group of boys. One morning I looked out and they were negotiating with some smaller children… and I said ‘look they’re like playing cards we don’t swap at school’,” Wānaka Primary principal Wendy Bamford said.
But the brightly coloured shoes aren’t just causing arguments, Bamford said they’re causing injuries too.
“I watched a little girl tumble over carrying a whole lot of library books,” she said.
“A lot of them don’t fit properly, they don’t fit the foot snuggly so they tend to slip out.”
It’s an issue that’s transcending the playground.
In fact, ACC dealt with 188 Croc-related injuries throughout 2023, which cost more than $71,000.
But the organisation said accidents involving Crocs are a small part of a bigger issue with ACC forking out $1.4 billion every year for more than 770,000 falls-related claims.
“Over the last few years we’ve seen the number of Croc-related injuries increase and that would be because they’re becoming a little bit more popular these days,” ACC spokesperson James Whitaker said.
And Whitaker has a message to Kiwis heading out for a hike this summer – leave the Crocs at home.
“The best way to prevent trips, slips and falls or other injuries is to slow down a bit, think things through before you do them and then do them the smart way,” he said.
To ensure you can enjoy some R&R without a trip to A&E.