Did you know?
- Unintentional pedestrian injuries are the fifth leading cause of injury-related death in the United States for children ages 5 to 19.
- Developmentally, kids cannot judge speed and distance of approaching vehicles until age 10.
- Teens have a death rate twice that of younger children and account for half of all child pedestrian deaths.
- Eighty percent of child pedestrian deaths occur at non-intersection locations
It’s important that you talk to your kids about how to be safe while walking. Whether your kids are walking to school, the park or a friend’s house, here are a few simple tips to make sure they get there safely.
- It’s always best to walk on sidewalks or paths and cross at street corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks.
- Remind kids to make eye contact with drivers before crossing the street.
- Watch out for cars that are turning or backing up.
- When driving, be especially alert in residential neighborhoods and school zones and be on the lookout for bikers, walkers or runners who may be distracted or may step into the street unexpectedly.
- Children under 10 should cross the street with an adult. Developmentally they are not able to judge speed and distance of cars.
- Teach kids to look up and pay extra attention when using headphones, cell phones or electronic devices such as a tablet or game.
- Make it a rule to put these devices down when crossing the street. It is particularly important to reinforce the message with your teenagers.
- Set a good example by putting devices down your own electronic devices when you are driving or walking around cars.
- If your kids need to use a cell phone, teach them to stop walking and find a safe area to talk. For headphones, pull them down or turn off the volume before crossing the street.
Drivers should also be cautious and stay alert. Pay attention to your surroundings and look out for pedestrians. Here are safety tips for drivers:
- Stay alert in residential neighborhoods and school zones and be on the lookout for bikers, walkers or runners who may be distracted or may step into the street unexpectedly.
- Give pedestrians the right of way and look both ways when making a turn.
- Put cell phones and other distractions in the back seat or out of site until your final destination.
- Enter and exit driveways and alleys slowly and carefully.