Road safety is one of Kidsafe WA’s priority areas, as too many children are being injured on the road. Each year, over 1,200 children present to the Princess Margaret Hospital for Children as a result of a road traffic injury. These include injuries to children as either a passenger or pedestrian, however a large number of these involve children as pedestrians using either a bicycle or other small wheeled device.
To reduce the risk of injuries to children as road users, it is important to take the appropriate safety measures and teach children how to be safe when travelling near or on the road.
Follow these steps to keep children safe when near or on the road:
- Always supervise children near traffic
- Teach children to stop, look, listen and think before crossing the road
- Ensure children learn and practise how to use equipment in a safe place away from roads, driveways and slopes
- Make sure the brakes and locking mechanism for bicycles or other small wheeled devices work before using them
- Make sure children use protective equipment such as helmets, wrist, knee and elbow guards when using small wheeled devices
- Ensure children wear bright coloured clothing so that they stand out and are easy to see when near the road
- Make sure everyone is buckled up on every trip when travelling in the car
- Ensure children are using a correctly fitted child car restraint for the child’s age and size.
To find out more about how you can educate young children about becoming safe and independent road users, have a look at the Smart Steps education program by School Drug Education and Road Aware. This program is ideal for educators of young children under the age of four years old, and provides the skills required to teach road safety information to young children. For more information visit http://www.sdera.wa.edu.au/programs/smart-steps/.
For more information about road safety visit http://www.kidsafewa.com.au/road or contact Kidsafe WA on (08) 6244 4886.