Children should be taught important lessons about road safety and traffic rules. Whether they just play in front of your home or are old enough to wander further, you can help keep them safe by teaching them these important rules of the road.
Although they may be too young to understand every single traffic sign and signal, there are a few they should absolutely know before they are allowed on any road without you. Traffic signals including Green, Red, and Yellow should be taught, as well as, how to use and read crosswalk signals.
Stop. Look. Cross.
Even if the road has a crosswalk signal or designated crossing area, they should be taught to always stop. Look in all directions, not just both ways. Looking only to the left and right does not help them at a 4-way street when vehicles could approach from behind them or from across the street – not just from their left or right.
Teach them to never cross at bends in the road or hilled roads as they may not be able to see oncoming cars. They should also never cross between stationary vehicles as those vehicles can start moving with no notice at all.
Listen and Do Not Wear Headphones
With the popularity of headphones these days, your children should know to always remove them or not wear them until they’ve reached their destination. The ability to hear unseen cars can help keep them safe. Cars will often use their horn if your child does not see them, and their ability to hear the horn could avoid a fatal collision.
Let them know that emergency vehicles will not abide by traffic signals. Listening for sirens before they cross, regardless of the signal is very important. If they hear a siren, they should wait until they can determine where it is coming from and if it is drawing closer or further from them. These vehicles are often traveling at a high rate of speed and often come out of nowhere.
Use the Sidewalks – Not the Road
Let them know to never run alongside a roadway. They can get easily distracted and should be taught to never run or sprint near traffic areas. When possible, they should use sidewalks, or situate themselves to the furthermost point of the side of the road – even if that means they are walking in grassy areas.