Parents have a responsibility to make sure their children know all about road and car safety.
Let’s take a look at the data. In the U.S. alone, more than 1,600 kids under 15 years old die in road crashes. One in every five of those kids were pedestrians. These numbers are shocking, and should not be happening in the first place.
Importance of Road Safety Rules and Regulations for Kids
The statistics on child deaths underscore the importance of teaching children road safety. Parents and educators should teach road rules to kids at the earliest age possible. Why? Because our towns and cities are chock full of streets, roads, and freeways.
Your child is bound to end up walking on the sidewalk or riding a bike around the neighborhood. Can you imagine if there weren’t any road safety rules? There would be chaos in the streets and a lot of people, children included, can get injured or worse
There are rules for pedestrians and drivers in place for a reason – to prevent avoidable accidents from happening.
Guidelines to Teach Road Safety for Children
Teaching a child how to stay safe on the road isn’t difficult, provided you use the correct approach.
- You have to make it fun, memorable, and easy to understand.
- Do your first practice by setting-up a simulated road scenario at home.
- Use props and games to make the experience enjoyable for them.
- Never shout or get angry at your child if they don’t get it or do something wrong.
Remember, you are only practicing, and practice makes perfect. When you feel that your child grasps all the rules, go for a short walk around the block and show her/him the real thing.
When teaching your kids about road safety, you can start with these lessons:
· How to Use Crosswalks
Begin your road rules lesson by explaining to your child why crosswalks or zebra crossings are essential. Let them know that pedestrians rule the crosswalks, and all drivers should stop. Also, teach them that not all drivers follow the rules.
They have to make eye contact with the driver when crossing the road and pay attention to what’s happening. When a car is too close to the crosswalk, they shouldn’t cross the way and let the vehicles pass first.
· Stop, Look and Listen
Teach your child that before crossing the street, he/she should stop, look around for any signs of danger, and listen for oncoming cars. This rule is critical for ensuring the safety of children, even when using crosswalks.
The “stop, look and listen” rule has been a component of school safety regulations for many years, and is very useful.
· Signals and Colors
When driving, tell your kids all about traffic lights, what they mean, and why they’re essential. This lesson is more effective when children can see it firsthand.
- When the light turns RED, the car stops
- When the light turns YELLOW, the car slows down
- When the light turns GREEN, the car moves
Alternatively, you can highlight what the colors mean:
- RED = STOP
- YELLOW = SLOW DOWN
- GREEN = GO
When walking, explain that the colors are the same for pedestrians, and these appear as symbols at intersections. Also explain to your child that even when the symbols turn green, he/she should look left and right before crossing the street. Read means stay on the sidewalk.
· Sidewalk and Street Rules
Teach your child always to use the sidewalk when walking at all times. Tell them they should never step down from the street unless they are ready to cross the road using the crosswalk. Explain to your kids that sidewalks are only for walking, not for playing.
Even the streets are off limits for playing, also though the volume of vehicles is low. Teach your child to never run across the street, wait for the right signals, and walk to another side. Children should wear bright colored outfits so they can be easily seen by drivers.
Kids should also know all about not crossing at bends and only using straightaways where they’re visible. Teach your kid not to cross the street when a car is approaching and never to pass between two stationary vehicles.
Children are precious cargo. Here are a few tips to help keep your child safe during a car trip.
- Your child should always wear a seat belt. If you have a toddler, make sure to use a car seat.
- If you’re buying a used car, make sure to check the Vin number and check the vehicle history report.
- Always use the child lock feature on the doors to prevent kids from opening it.
- Stay calm and patient while driving to set a good example.
- Don’t use cell phones or other gadgets when driving.
- Try, so you won’t rush where you’re going.
- Never leave your children alone in the car.
Lilly Myers’ Bio
Lilly Myers is a freelance content writer and social worker at Beverly Hills Speech Therapy. She has just recently received Master’s in Medical Sciences. Besides her occupancy she tries to find a spare time for volunteering and helping the people with disorders.