The Pedestrian Safer Journey
It’s National Bike Month, a time when everyone who rides a bike should refresh their cycling safety knowledge and spend time thinking about ways to stay safe when riding. It’s also a time when parents and teachers should teach young people the safety basics when using roads and sidewalks, and a natural part of that conversation includes staying safe when on foot.
To help parents and teachers begin that conversation, the Federal Highway Administration provides a video series, the Pedestrian Safer Journey, which is a suite of resources available for educators and parents to use in sparking conversations with children and youth about pedestrian safety.
These conversations are important because in 2015, for example, America endured a 9 percent jump in pedestrian deaths. A total of 5,376 pedestrians were killed in motor vehicle-related crashes that year.
The Pedestrian Safer Journey includes three videos — one for ages 5 to 9, one for ages 10 to 14, and one for ages 15 to 18— accompanied by quizzes and discussions. There also are links to external resources such as the Safe Routes to School Guide provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the National Center for Safe Routes to School.
Whether walking with adult family members or with friends, learning basic pedestrian safety may help prevent injuries and prepare school-age children and youth for a lifetime of safe walking. As young people become drivers, it may help them be more aware of pedestrians as they navigate their community’s streets.
Preventing pedestrian injuries requires a combination of approaches: engineering strategies to improve the physical environment for walking, enforcement strategies to reduce vehicle speeds and increase driver yielding to pedestrians, and safety skills development and education for drivers and pedestrians.