(WJBK) - Unintentional pedestrian injuries are the fifth leading cause of injury-related death in the United States for children ages 5 to 19. Teenagers are now at greatest risk. Teens have a death rate twice that of younger children and account for half of all child pedestrian deaths.
Nearly one in four traffic deaths among children ages 14 and under are pedestrian deaths. As pedestrians, children are at even greater risk of injury or death from traffic crashes due to their small size, inability to judge distances and speeds, and lack of experience with traffic rules.
In 2013, 78% (348) of child pedestrian deaths occurred at non-intersection locations.
- 80% of child pedestrian deaths occur at non-intersection locations.
- Teens have a death rate twice that of younger children and have accounted for half of all child pedestrian injuries in the past five years.
- Developmentally, kids cannot judge speed and distance of approaching vehicles until age 10.
- May children assume that if they can see the car, then the car can see them.
- On average, children are more than twice as likely to be hit by a car and killed on Halloween than other days of the year.
- Teach kids at an early age to look left, right and left again before crossing the street. Then remind them to continue looking until safely across.
- Teach kids to put phones, headphones and devices down when crossing the street. It is particularly important to reinforce this message with teenagers.
- It's always best to walk on sidewalks or paths and cross at street corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible.
- Children under 10 need to cross the street with an adult. Every child is different, but developmentally, most kids are unable to judge the speed and distance of oncoming cars until age 10.
- Be a good role model. Set a good example by putting your phone, headphones and devices down when walking around cars.
- Whenever possible, cross the street at a designated crosswalk or intersection.
- Increase your visibility at night by carrying a flashlight and wearing retro-reflective clothing.
- It's safest to walk on a sidewalk, but if one is not available, walk on the shoulder and face traffic.
Been Safe - Be Seen!
- 67% of fatal pedestrian crashes happen at night - Statistics show that most pedestrian injuries happen between November and February and in the evening hours (4pm - 10 pm).
- A pedestrian walking during darkness (morning or evening) and they are wearing low visibility clothing, like dark colors, gives a driver going 55mph less then 1 second to react.
§ In a drivers head lights, a pedestrian can be seen when wearing:
§ Blue colored clothing can be seen 55 ft away
§ Red colored clothing can be seen 80 ft away
§ Yellow colored clothing can be seen 120 ft away
§ White colored clothing can be seen 180 ft away
§ Reflective clothing/objects can be seen 500 ft away
- Keep in mind, a driver going 60 mph, needs the length of a football field to stop (300ft)!
For more safety information, visit www.childrensDMC.org/KIPP.