As the school year begins across Illinois, many children will begin their mornings and end their afternoon walking to and from school. As the number of children walking on roadways increases so do the number of auto-pedestrian accidents. Fortunately, there are ways for you to help your children stay safe as they walk to and from school.
Children should be taught safe practices to use when walking on or near the road as advised by the National Safety Council. You should always teach your children the proper way to cross a street. Even if they have permission from a pedestrian sign, children should always look left and right and then left again before crossing. They should ensure drivers see them by waiting for the vehicle to stop before crossing in front of it and by making eye contact.
You need to teach your children to always use sidewalks, and when they are not available, to walk on the very edge of the road facing traffic. They should watch for vehicles turning left at intersections and never come from between two parked cars to cross the road. Ideally, you should advise your children to only walk in areas with sidewalks, crosswalks and pedestrian signs if possible.
You can also do your part in increasing the safety of your child as he or she walks to school by sewing or applying reflective tape to their bookbag and jacket. Also, buy your children light colored clothing, coats and bags. This information is only intended to educate and should not be interpreted as legal advice.