Protecting our Children from Dangers of the Road

Pedestrian accidents continue to be the second leading cause of fatalities among children between the ages of 5 and 14 across the U.S. According to Broward Health, our young pedestrians are at such great risk for these kinds of accidents because they don’t always understand the rules of the road and because these risks oftentimes exceed their behavioral, developmental, physical, cognitive and sensory abilities.

At the same time, many parents overestimate these skills in their children.
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More specifically, children ages 1 and 2 are at the highest risks for these kinds of accidents. Usually, these accidents happen when vehicles are reversing out of a driveway, over a sidewalk or out of a parking spot. The injuries they sustain are oftentimes severe and even fatal. Each year, there are roughly 625 child pedestrians killed and another 40,000 injured in traffic accidents. These accidents can be prevented with a little education.

Our Fort Lauderdale pedestrian accident attorneys are asking parents to sit down and to have a talk with the child in their family, especially as schools are letting out for winter break. They’ll be spending more time outside and consequentially will be at greater risks for these kinds of accidents. In addition to having the talk, make sure that they understand the rules and that you’re still providing them with the proper supervision.

Where do most child pedestrian accidents happen?

-In areas where there are high volumes of traffic.

-Areas where there are a lot of vehicles parked along the street.

-In areas where vehicles are traveling fast, or areas with higher speed limits.

-In areas that have no divided highways.

-In areas that don’t have enough pedestrian-control devices, like crosswalks, crossing signals or crossing guards.

-Communities that don’t have areas designated for children to play in, like playgrounds.

-Residential communities.

-Paved, straight or dry roads.

How can I keep my child safe?

-Make sure that children younger than 10-years-old don’t cross the road without an adult.

-Teach the by example. Always practice your safest pedestrian travel habits when walking with your child. Remember to always cross at street corners, use traffic signals and make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them.

-Teach your child to look left, right and left again before crossing the street and to keep looking left and right for oncoming cars as they cross.

-Never let children run into the road.

-While waiting for a school bus, students should remain at least 10 feet from the roadway.

“Pedestrian safety is a concern in our community and our hope is that we can teach children to be safer pedestrians in a way they will remember for years to come,” said Jennifer Belyeu with Safe Kids Broward County
Talking with your child and making sure they understand their responsibility as a pedestrian will help to keep them out of a potentially fatal accident. Have the talk with them today!

If you or your child has been injured in a pedestrian accident, contact Richard Ansara at 954 761-3641 or toll-free at 877-277-3780 for a free initial consultation to discuss your case.

More Blog Entries:

Pedestrian Accidents in Florida on the Rise!, Broward Injury Lawyer Blog, December 8, 2012

Broward Advocates Fighting for Blind Pedestrian Safety, Broward Injury Lawyer Blog, November 25, 2012