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Water Safety Reporting in Taipei County Newspapers�
Water safety education is the best prevention strategy for the drowning among the public and the adolescent. Under the current elementary school, and the middle school curricula, there were not any topics about water safety education, and there not enough financial supports to convey water safety information via mass media for the fire and health departments; however, daily newspapers were the important sources of water safety information. Therefore, how, what, and why to report water safety in daily newspapers. Which are the major purpose of this study, will influence the public and the adolescent knowledge of water safety. The samples were newspaper clippings reporting water safety, drowning events, waters and aquatic activities between May and September, 2000, from three copies of daily local newspapers in Taipei County, Taiwan. Each clipping was reviewed to determine the presence/absence or one of choices of 32 content variables. There were the following important findings. The drowning events were quite often found in the titles and contents of newspaper. The water safety reporting in newspapers contained many details about the introduction of the water concerns and drowning events, but few details about prevention measures or strategies. The drowning events were reported very exactly and widely in newspaper. The belief, knowledge, attitude, and practices reported in newspaper were mostly wrong, and less than fifty percentage. There were significant differences in the above these categories among three copies of newspapers. Threat appraisal and fear appeal were still the major communication strategies for prevention of drowning.
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