Pedestrian accidents are always serious, tragic events, but they become even more dreadful when they involve children. In 2013, nearly 10,000 child pedestrians were injured in traffic crashes. Two hundred and thirty-six of these accidents were fatal.
There are few things as heartbreaking as watching one of your children suffer through injuries sustained in a pedestrian accident. Some of these injuries have permanent side effects and life altering consequences.
Parents can provide instruction and training for their children as they travel and play near streets and vehicles in order to help protect them from these personal injury accidents.
Accidents Can Be Prevented
Most of the child pedestrian accidents that do occur could have been easily prevented. Studies demonstrate that most pedestrian accidents occur when the pedestrians fail to pay attention to the traffic on the road.
While this does not nullify the responsibility of Everett drivers to be alert and aware of pedestrians on the road, it does signify a tendency on the part of pedestrians to be careless around moving vehicles.
So what separates your children from being one of the thousands to be injured in a pedestrian accident? The answer is found in their training and road safety education. Here are some key road safety tips that parents need to teach to their children to prevent a serious pedestrian accident.
Road Safety Tips
Studies have shown that children ages 10 to 12 are most likely to be involved in a pedestrian accident. Vehicle traffic accidents are a leading cause of death for children between the ages of 3 and 14.
By the time kids are 11, they are often walking to school or the bus stop on their own. These commutes can hold any number of crosswalks and intersections that require alertness and care. Even during the afternoons when kids are outside playing, knowledge about how to engage other vehicles on the road is critical to their protection.
- ‘Stop, Look, Listen’ Rule
Teach your children the rule of ‘stop, look, and listen’. This should be a rule for every time they are preparing to cross a street. Stop at the curb, look both ways, and listen for approaching traffic. If there are no approaching vehicles, you may cross with caution. Even when children are too young to fully understand this rule, parents can follow these steps when they are out on family walks or when crossing streets together to help them develop good habits from a young age.
- Use Crosswalks
Encourage your children to use the crosswalks when traveling to and from school, the bus, or other destinations. This increases the child’s safety, as cars must slow down and yield to pedestrians at crosswalks.
- Wear Bright Clothing
If you know your child will be leaving or returning home during dark hours of the day, be sure they are wearing bright or reflective clothing. Try to avoid dull or dark colors, such as black, grey, and dark blues or green. This will make it easier for drivers to see your children in the dim light.
- Watch for Vehicles
The driveway and sidewalk are great places for kids to play sports and ride bikes. It is important, however, that children learn how to safely play in these areas so as to avoid passing traffic. Take the time to instruct your children about how to safely play in areas where there may be vehicles. Try to avoid allowing very young children to play unsupervised anywhere near a driveway or side street.
- Be Cautious
As children become more and more confident traveling to and from school or playing with friends, it can be easy for them to neglect the importance of being cautious around roads and traffic. This is potentially why children are more likely to be involved in child pedestrian accidents at age 12. This age seems to insinuate a new level of maturity that can prompt kids to make short-sighted and irrational mistakes. Exhort your children to remain alert and attentive when crossing roads and playing near traffic.
Everett Pedestrian Accident Attorney
Unfortunately, despite our best efforts, terrible pedestrian accidents can still occur. If your child has sustained injuries as the result of an accident they were not responsible for, you have every legal right to pursue full and fair compensation from the wrongdoer and their insurance company for the child’s injuries.
The process of filing a claim, collecting evidence, working with insurance providers, and meeting with doctors can take substantial time away from caring for your child. That is why we recommend contacting an Everett pedestrian accident attorney to assist you with these legal matters.
At Russell and Hill, PLLC, our trained and experienced attorneys are ready to assist you in your time of need. If your child has recently been injured in a pedestrian accident, one of our professional attorneys is ready to help prepare and negotiate your case. For more information, contact us directly by calling us at 425-728-7467 or simply complete our contact form.