October 2, 2019 is National Walk to School Day
Sponsored by the National Center for Safe Routes to School, October 2, 2019 is “National Walk to School Day.” Over 4,000 schools have registered to participate on walkbiketoschool.org from all 50 states and Washington, D.C.. According to the event’s press release, this is “…the 23rd annual celebration which highlights the importance of safer, more active transportation for youth in their local communities.”
According to event organizers, “More than half of Walk to School Day events lead to changes in policies and the physical environment that improve safety for walking and bicycling, holding promise for improving safety and transportation options for everyone.” New this year, participants can check out a series of webinars to find out how their event can be a tool for improving pedestrian safety in the community.
Child pedestrian accident statistics
According to data on jamanetwork.com, more than 50,000 children are injured as pedestrians every year in the U.S. Of those injured, approximately 1,800 die, and 18,000 are admitted to the hospital for their injuries.
How to improve child pedestrian safety
Safety experts see the need for a holistic approach to improving child pedestrian safety that includes education for parents, pedestrian skills training programs, legislation, vehicle design adjustments, and environmental improvements. These programs and laws must come through coordination and planning at the local, state, and national levels in order to be effective.
Tips to keep your child safe on the way to and from school
These four tips from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), can help keep your school-aged children safe as pedestrians on the way to and from school:
- Drivers must stop when a school bus stops. When the school bus has red flashing lights going, drivers must stop at least 20-feet from the bus and wait until the lights stop before proceeding.
- Parents should talk pedestrian safety around buses with the children:
- Teach them to stay five steps away from the curb when buses are near
- Wait to board a bus until it has come to a complete stop and the driver welcomes you aboard
- Wait to exit the bus until it has come to a complete stop
- After exiting: look left-right-left for cars before crossing a street
- Children under the age of 10 should be accompanied by an adult or older child when walking to and from school. They should be taught to:
- Walk on sidewalks (when possible)
- Cross the street at marked intersections (when possible)
- Never push or roughhouse while walking
- Keep their eyes on the road
- Teach bike safety starting with a correctly fitted helmet. Bikers should ride in the same direction as traffic, and follow traffic signs and signals.
Seek the help of a pedestrian accident lawyer
If you or a loved one was injured because of the negligence of another, contact a personal injury lawyer to discuss your legal rights. Let an experienced accident attorney fight for the full compensation that you deserve. It is not uncommon to receive a settlement from the insurance company that is five to ten times bigger with the help of a lawyer. Call the personal injury lawyers at Tario & Associates, P.S. in Bellingham, WA today for a FREE consultation! We have been representing residents of Whatcom County, Skagit County, Island County and Snohomish County since 1979. You will pay nothing up front and no attorney fees at all unless we recover damages for you!