The Definitive Child Road Safety Guide

posted Jul 27, 2015, 9:57 PM by Todd Fox   [ updated Sep 23, 2016, 12:57 PM ]
Knowing and applying these safe steps is considered as a significant contribution towards creating more vibrant and liveable communities and attaining safe and sustainable transport to the benefit of all who use the roads.

A Look at Child-related Road Accidents Worldwide

  • · Every 4 minutes, a child in some part of the world is involved in a road accident.­ 
  • · According to the World Health Organization: For children 15-17 years old, there is no greater threat to their lives than road traffic crashes. 
  • · Boys account for nearly twice as many road traffic deaths as girls worldwide. This increased risk for boys is thought to be due to greater exposure to traffic, as well as a tendency for boys to take more risks than girls. 
  • · 38% of children involved in road accidents are pedestrians in Low to Middle income countries. 
  • · 36% of children involved in road accidents are passengers in High income countries. 

Seven Strategies to Keep Kids Safe on the Road 

  1. Don’t exceed 20 mph or 30 kph in high-pedestrian traffic areas 
    1. Speed is the number 1 contributing factor in every road accident. That’s why speed must be limited and controlled on every high-pedestrian traffic area such as schools and residences. 
    2. Driving with a speed limit of up to 20 miles per hour or 30 kilometres per hour reduces the dangerous aspect of a car greatly. 
  2. Never drink and drive 
    1. Going beyond 0.05g/dl BAC (blood alcohol concentration) increases the risk of road-related accidents by 2500% or 25x. 
    2. UAE enforces a strict rule when it comes to drinking alcohol. So don’t even drink a sip if you’re going to drive.
  3. Wear helmets 
    1. For cyclists, this is the single most effective strategy to reduce the risk of head injuries that are mostly fatal in nature. 
    2. A helmet can reduce the risk of head injury by as much as 69%--decreasing death risk by as much as 40%. 
  4. Wear restraints in vehicles 
    1. Aside from wearing a seat belt, putting children on restraints while riding a vehicle are estimated to reduce significant injuries by 59%, fatalities by 70% on infants, and between 54-80% on young children. 
    2. Restraints include specialised and age-appropriate car seats and booster seats. 
  5. Improve visibility 
    1. Wearing light coloured clothing and using reflective materials on articles such as backpacks and vests are effective ways to improve a child’s visibility on the road at any time. 
    2. For motorists, opening the vehicle’s lights is known to reduce traffic crashes by 29%. 
  6. Get trained or informed in providing appropriate care 
    1. Learning certain emergency care techniques and first aid will benefit the young children involved in a road scuffle. Because of their age, the young have an extraordinary capacity for recovery.
  7. Educate both children and motorists 
    1. Being actively involved in teaching children and motorists alike in the discipline of safe driving and exercising judgment on the road prove invaluable to every person in lessening life-threatening risks. 
    2. Sharing the importance of adhering to laws and regulations, teaching proper road ethics and etiquette and educating about the meaning of road signs will help reduce the probability of a child being involved in a road accident. Road safety is everyone’s responsibility. 

About the Author:

Born and raised in the Philippines, Joanna has been living in Dubai with her family for the past 10 years. Her journey to parenthood inspired her in spearheading, the best parent's planning platform for after school kids activities in UAE.