Road Safety Recommendations for Parents - Children watch and copy what adults do. Make sure you are setting a good example to them!
Children are the most vulnerable traffic participants
Children are considered the most vulnerable participants in traffic, because up to the age of approximately ten years they often do not yet have the physical and cognitive skills to make safe judgments and choices of their own about traffic. In Iran among all unintentional fatal injuries inflicted on children under five years of age, traffic-related fatalities are the leading cause of death. Road crashes are also the highest cause of injuries among children aged 10-19 years old.
How to prevent a road injury?
In the car
Child seats – securing our most precious cargo
Children under the age of 8 must be secured in an appropriate child restraint system, more commonly called a safety seat. Child seats, if used correctly, reduce the death rate in car accidents by 71 per cent among infants and by 54 per cent among young children.
Ø Always use car seats appropriate to the size and age of your child, starting with your baby’s first ride from hospital.
Ø An infant is never safe in your arms. Even a minor accident can break your child from your hold. You can even crush him or her in a collision.
Ø Never put your baby on your lap while driving
Ø Every child should use a child restraint suitable for his/her size and weight. Choose a car seat with restraints. Be sure to follow the manufacturer's installation instruction precisely and check the vehicle's owner's manual for installation procedures.
Ø Infant car seats should be installed facing the rear. After one year, s/he can move into a properly secured, forward-facing toddler seat.
Ø Never place your child or infant in a safety seat in the front seat with an airbag. Airbags pose a serious risk to children riding in the front seat.
Ø Make sure that there are no loose objects on the parcel shelf, seat or floor of the car that could fly about in a car crash and can lead to an injury.
Seat belts save life!
Children at the age of 8 and above should wear a seat belt all the time while riding in a car. Seat belts have saved more lives in accidents than any other road safety measures. Wearing a seatbelt belt reduces the risk of bring ejected from a vehicle and suffering serious or fatal injury by 40-65 per cent.
The back seat is the safest for all children to ride
All children are safest in the back, centre seat, in a safety seat or seat belt. This position is the farthest away from both front and side impacts.
SAFETY IS NOT NEGOTIABLE!
Set rules and be firm around safety. If your child refuses to wear seat belt or insist to ride in the front seat, do not start the trip until s/he agrees to stay in the back seat and put on the seat belt.
As a pedestrian
In Iran, during the course of any day 13 pedestrian lose their lives in road traffic crashes. Being the most vulnerable road users, children are most affected in such an unsafe traffic environment.
Children under the age of 9 years do not have the skills and ability to cross the road safely on their own. They are easily distracted and often misjudge the distance and speed of cars.
Ø Always hold your child's hand when near or crossing a road.
Ø Be a good example to your children – children learn by example. Use traffic lights or a pedestrian crossing when they are available.
Ø Teach them simple road rules: to look to the left, look to the right and left again before crossing the road
On a bicycle
Ø All bicyclists are encouraged to wear a bicycle helmet. This will prevent serious head injury.
Ø Never carry children less than 12 months old on bicycles.
Children and Motorbikes— unsafe at any speed
In Iran, 25 per cent of all road fatalities are those involving motorbikes. Over 60 per cent of those occur because the drivers did not wear a helmet and incurred head traumas.
Motorbikes are not for Children under 12!
It is inadvisable to have a child younger than 12 years old as a passenger on a motorcycle, since they do not have the size, stamina, strength, attention span, or knowledge of the traffic game to ride along safely. According to safety experts, any motorbike passengers should be physically able to sit on the passenger seat of the bike and have their feet planted securely on both foot pegs and hold on to the bike passenger strap or the rider and must be able to and must wear a helmet.
Helmet saves life!
Wearing a helmet is the single most effective way of reducing head injuries and fatalities resulting from motorcycle crashes.
Speed, Road Crashes and Children
Speed is the main factor contributing to road traffic injuries in most countries. Studies show that a 5% increase in average speed leads to approximately a 20% increase in fatal crashes.
Set example: DO NOT SPEED!
Your child is watching you: Act responsibly when you drive. Obey the speed limit and avoid distractions like cell phones. Help your child become a safe driver and a responsible young adult by being a consistent role model!