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Last week we celebrated International Walk to School Day, so let’s take a moment and review how to walk safely and raise awareness about child pedestrian safety in your community.

Top Tips for Kids

  • Look left, right and left again when crossing the street. And continue looking until safely across.
  • It’s always best to walk on sidewalks or paths and cross at street corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks.
  • Make eye contact with drivers before crossing the street.
  • Watch for cars that are turning or backing up. Be especially careful in parking lots or when crossing driveways.
  • If you are using a cell phone, headphones or a game, remember: Devices down when you cross the street.

Top Tips for Parents

  • Talk to your kids about how to be safe while walking. It’s always best to walk on sidewalks or paths and cross at street corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks.
  • Teach kids at an early age to put down their devices and then look left, right and left again when crossing the street.
  • Children under 10 should cross the street with an adult. Every child is different, but developmentally, it can be hard for kids to judge speed and distance of cars until age 10.
  • Remind kids to make eye contact with drivers before crossing the street and to watch out for cars that are turning or backing up.
  • Set a good example by putting devices down when you are driving or walking around cars. If we put our devices down, our kids are more likely to do the same.
  • 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.

Check out these two scenarios which give us a moment to think has this happened to you or someone you know, know the impact and remember the importance of pedestrian safety!

Scenario 1:   Walking while distracted by a phone or headphones.      

                  Stat:  1 in 4 high school students crosses the street while distracted.

                   Tip:  Phones down, heads up when walking.

Scenario 2:   Walking at night in dark clothes.

                  Stat:  75 percent of teen pedestrian deaths occur between 7pm and 7am, when it’s dark out.

                   Tip:  Be especially alert when it’s dark out, and make sure drivers can see you.

 

For more information, please visit Safe Routes to School or Georgia Commute Schools.

To learn more ways to stay safe, check our “How to Keep Your Kids Safe on the Walk to School” post.

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