Back-to-school time is almost upon us, so make sure you know how to get your child there safely
With the summer holidays sailing past at a rapid pace, it’s never too early to start thinking about back to school safety. Accidents on the road are all too common, especially where children are involved. In fact, over 15,000 children suffer casualties on UK roads every year.
So whether your child is starting a new school and you need to find the safest way to get them there, or you just need to brush up on your travel safety before they return to the classroom, it’s always a good idea to increase your child safety knowledge.
Bus travel safety
The school bus is one of the most commonly used travel methods for school mornings, and is also one of the safest. Research shows that travelling by school bus is around sixteen times safer than travelling via family car.
However, there are still safety aspects to keep in mind. Your child should know to stand well back from an approaching bus and to only get off when it reaches the school. They should also be able to recognise when they are near their home so they know when to get off during the return journey.
Car travel safety
Road safety is a huge aspect of travel safety, and when driving your child to school you need to be extra aware of your surroundings, as well as your actions and the effects they can have. In a single year, there were 1,730 fatalities on UK roads and 22,144 serious injuries. In total, there were 186,189 casualties, and the peak travelling times of before school (8-10am) and after school (3-5pm) are the windows of time when most car accidents occur.
Use school safety measures as a guide when dropping off your kids by car, as most schools have designated drop-off and pick-up points. You should also respect all speed limits, but particularly those near the school. The roads are likely to be busy at this time with people in a hurry to get to work, so it’s important that you remain calm and observant, and don’t create hazards yourself through impatient or reckless driving.
Walking travel safety
Walking to school is a great way to encourage your child to move more and enjoy some fresh air, but it’s important that you know the risks involved too so you can prepare for them. Make sure you child knows to stick to the pavement and only to cross the road at designated crossings when the green man is showing. They should never deviate from their path and should know not to accept invitations or rides from strangers.
It’s always a good idea to walk with your child on the first day of school, that way you know exactly what route they’ll take.
Bike travel safety
The two main factors of cycle safety are age and experience. Children under the age of nine or ten shouldn’t be riding to school without adult supervision, and even older children who choose to cycle to school should have a lot of bicycle experience under their belt. Cycling can put children in quite a vulnerable position, as they’re likely to be riding side-by-side with vehicles much bigger, stronger and faster than they are.
But like walking, cycling can be a great option for fresh air and exercise — just make sure your child has everything they need. Helmets and pads will help keep them safe if an accident does occur, and they should also know to obey the rules of the road.
Wearable tech is a great way to boost safety for children walking to school without an adult, thanks to its GPS functions.
For more information on child safety, including the many ways wearable tech can help your children keep safe, why not check out some of the watches we’re currently recommending here at Kidssmartwatches.co.uk
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