A study conducted by the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (in English – International Automobile Federation) Foundation shows that two children per minute are more likely to become victims of road crash somewhere in the world. They can be seriously injured, or worst died. That’s a staggering one million in a year. To date, road traffic injury is said to be the leading cause of death among children aged five to fourteen.
As soon as a child is old enough to go out of the house, he must already be taught of the basic road and traffic safety procedures. Safety for children is a thing that should not be compromised especially by his parents. At a young age, he needs to be supervised and equipped with knowledge and precautions when he is on the road. An experience they say is the best teacher. Walk on the street with your child, talk and explain different road signs and rules and let them experience it as is.
Children, especially those that are too young should not go out on the road alone. He should always be guided by his parents.
Traffic safety for five years old and below
While walking, you can talk about traffic situations for your children.
Always hold your child’s hand especially when you are near moving vehicles. Explain to him why you need to do so. That is for his safety.
Tell the child that you need to cross the road together. You can also test him by asking if it is already safe to cross the street or not. Parents should be the ones to decide on this, but at least, you can teach your child to be aware of the road environment.
Find a secure place where children can play. Don’t make pathways or roadside a place for playing.
Read also: “Biking Safety: How Helmet Protects a Child“
Serve as an example to your children. Follow traffic rules either when driving or walking.
Traffic safety for five to nine years old
Discuss traffic signs and the traffic light to your kid. Teach him where and when to “stop, look and listen.”
You can walk with your child to places he often visits like the church, the school or local shops. Let him be familiar with the places where he can safely walk or cross the street.
Traffic safety for kids between ten and up
Children at this age can cope more safely in traffic. But still, parents’ supervision is vital for their safety.
You can check if your child follows traffic rules and assess how they understand it, why they need to do it.
Talk to your child about traffic laws. You can walk or take a ride with your children to make him understand it more.
Avoid driveway accidents
One of the common accidents at home, as seen on viral videos, is driveway accidents. Do not let this happen to your children. Separate playing pens and playing areas in or near the driveway. Always do a visual check around the car before moving a vehicle. Be sure that no child is on the site and they are in safe places. There are blindsides in a car, so it is always safe to check, recheck and triple check.
- Let your kids be familiar with the signals. Explain the lights on the traffic lights, as well as the walk and don’t walk signs or symbols.
- Tell your kids to look at the left and the right to be sure that it is already safe before crossing the street.
- Tell your kids to always walk on the sidewalk and cross on a pedestrian crossing. Never cross on bends and curves as these are blind spots for drivers. Whether the street is busy or not, it is better to follow road rules.
- Be sure that the children are properly seen especially in the dark. Wear bright or light-colored clothes at night. Avoid wearing dark colors like black and navy. You can put reflective strips on children’s clothing, bags or shoes so that they will surely be seen.
- Children should be aware of their surroundings. Even parked cars can accidentally move. Be alert.
- 6. Teach your kids to be calm and behave. Avoid running while on the road. Don’t rush in getting off a vehicle or crossing the road.
- Children and adults as well who are riding in bikes and motorcycles should wear appropriate protective gear like helmets and pads. Make sure that the bikes are in good condition with proper lighting at night. Use the bicycle lane. Do not ride bikes and motorcycles without an adult’s consent and supervision.
- Always get off a vehicle on the curbside of the street for safety. Stand in line when boarding and alighting on buses.
Read also: “Kids and Safety the Sooner, the Better“
Teaching your kids about traffic safety rules and road regulations can be fun. It can be one of the bonding moments you can do with your child. It is better to teach them while they are young so they will be used to it as they grow. Put it in mind that these rules are meant to discipline them and to make them watchful and not to scare them.
There is no better way to teach these rules but through the application. Walking with your kids while teaching them, discussing road safety rules and tips is a very effective method for them to truly understand these lessons. Let the child learn through experience and parents’ interaction will help them learn easier.
Help your child build self-confidence. Knowing where and when to cross the street, or when to walk or stop will not just stimulate self-discipline and obedience, it can make them fully aware of their safety. These road safety rules are skills they can use as they grow up.
It will also be good to add these road safety rules to your kids’ activity in the school or the community. Speed limits on cars should also be imposed especially in busy areas like the schools and churches. Drivers should also be equipped with traffic rules and road safety to avoid causing accidents among pedestrians.
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