Road Safety Week – How You Can Play Your Part
Road Safety Week takes place from 23-29 November 2015 and educators are being urged to start planning now! It’s the UK’s biggest road safety event coordinated by the charity Brake and supported by headline sponsors RSA and Specsavers. Even though in the USA there is not a designated campaign at this time it is important to raise awareness about the part we can all play in preventing tragedies and making roads safer.
Parents play a vital role in road safety – from making sure their children are safely strapped into their car seats, teaching kids how to cross a road, keeping them safe near roads and also by demonstrating good road safety themselves through good behavior. During Road Safety Week drivers are asked to ‘drive less, live more’. To think about how they use roads, and if they can ditch some vehicle mileage, and instead walk, cycle or use public transport as much as possible. Ideas when considering this is to think about how much money you could save, calories you would burn, and pollution you won’t create, and build it into your routine.
Fact: Around 186,300 children under 18 years die from road traffic crashes annually, and rates of road traffic death are three times higher in developing countries than in developed countries.
7 Strategies for keeping kids safe on the roads:
- Speed. Speed is a contributing factor in around one-third of all fatal road traffic crashes in high-income countries, and up to half in low- and middle-income countries.
- Alcohol. Reducing the number of drunk drivers on the road. Consuming alcohol before driving increases not only the chance of a road traffic crash occurring, but also the likelihood that death or serious injury will result.
- Bike helmets (bicyclists and motorcyclists). For children, wearing a helmet is the single most effective strategy for reducing the risk of injury to the head while riding bicycles or motorcycles.
- Child Seats. For children who are occupants of a vehicle, a range of restraints is available to protect them. These include infant car seats, child car seats, booster seats and seat-belts, and their use depends on the age, weight and height of the child.
- Visibility. Wear bright colored clothing. Seeing and being seen are fundamental prerequisites for the safety of all people who travel the roads, but are particularly important for children due to their particular vulnerability.
- Reducing risks for young drivers. Young, novice drivers account for a large number of road traffic crashes globally.
- Supervising children around roads. Young children have a limited capacity to evaluate risk. Parents and other caregivers play an important role in helping the children care to interpret what is happening around them. A supervisory role is particularly useful for ensuring the safety of children in complex road environment.
Road safety tools and other resources can be found here.