Pedestrian Safety Facts for Children
Vehicle crashes are the number one cause of death for children between 4 and 14 years of age. In 2011, more than 30,000 people died in traffic accidents in the U.S. Children under the age of 14 accounted for 4 percent of the fatalities as well as 5 percent of pedestrian fatalities. Pedestrian accidents are common, and they are among the most dangerous types of accidents for their victims. A collision between a motor vehicle and a person, particularly a child, can result in significant injuries, disability and death. Knowing how to use the road safely can reduce a child’s risk.
1. Wear brightly colored or reflective clothing when walking. Most kids who are killed as a result of pedestrian accidents are killed between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. More kids are on the roadways during these hours, and the dim twilight can make them more difficult to see. Ensure that you and your child are clearly visible in order to stay safer any time you are walking.
2. Teach kids the rules of the road. Two-thirds of pedestrian fatalities are boys, who can often be impulsive. Talk to your kids about the rules of the road and practice walking, looking for cars and crossing the road safely before allowing them to walk without parental supervision.
3. Talk to kids about safe crossings. Nearly four out of five kids who were killed in pedestrian accidents were not at intersections. Use sidewalks, crosswalks and intersections appropriately, and follow traffic signals.