Tips on Teaching Your Child About the Dangers of the Road

2Latest figures show that over 19,000 children are injured on Britain’s roads each year, with about 2.5 thousand young people killed. As shocking as these figures are, the number of children killed in road accidents has actually fallen by 4 per cent.

The UK Government has advertising campaigns on television warning children of the dangers of the road. New initiatives such as speed awareness courses are now also available to teach drivers the difference reduced speed makes in increasing the chances of both children and adults surviving a collision.

However, parents are in the best position to teach children how best to navigate Britain’s roads safely, but the question is: where do we start with our kids?

Good habits begin early

Before your kids are close to walking the streets by themselves get them familiar with how to cross the road. The best way to teach is by example. So, when you next take you little ones to the park, involve them in the process of crossing safely by using the following steps:

  1. Take them by the hand when you near the road
  2. Point out that you’re stopping at a proper crossing together
  3. Make a point of looking both ways together
  4. Clearly identify cars and other vehicles as they approach
  5. Declare together when it is safe to cross
  6. Cross slowly while still holding hands and do NOT run

By following this simple checklist clearly and consistently, your kids will quickly learn how to cope with the traffic conditions at this familiar crossing.

Variety is the spice of life

As they grow older and familiar with their regular crossing, try new routes and various destinations. It’s important to point out the differences you’ll encounter and make children understand why they need to be more careful in different situations, by looking at the following factors:

  • Traffic congestion
  • Speed of the traffic flow
  • Type of crossings available
  • Distance and timing
  • When to be extra-cautious

Growing pains

Despite the lack of familiarity younger children have with the road, they are usually under adult supervision when encountering the real thing. It’s actually older, teenaged children with freedom to explore the roads who are at more risk of being involved in a road accident.

No matter how much these youngsters assure you they know what they’re doing, it only takes a moment of distraction for them to be involved in an accident. Always make sure they are aware of the dangers and listen to what they tell you of their experiences when travelling the streets.

Worst-case scenario

If the unthinkable does happen and your offspring is involved in a road traffic accident, remember there is help at hand. Medical Claims experts are available to give you advice on how to cope with this type of unexpected crisis.

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