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School time safety: Avoiding pedestrian accidents

School is just around the corner, and that means children are going to be walking to school. For many families, this is a major source of stress. It's never safe enough to send a child on a walking route to school.

While there's no way to guarantee absolute safety, there are some ways to reduce the risk of pedestrian accidents on the route your child takes to school. Here are a few things you can do.

1. Plan your route

The first thing you can do is plan a route. Is there a way to limit the amount of time your child spends around busy streets? Are there back roads through neighborhoods that would be safer than walking along a main roadway? Which route is the most direct?

Planning a route that doesn't overlap with heavy traffic is the best way to prevent accidents. Keep your child on routes used often by others, since drivers will be used to seeing kids walking to school.

2. Walk with your children

If your children are young, it should go without saying that you should walk with them to school each day or drop them off on your way to work. Even when your child is able to walk on his or her own, take the time to walk with him or her at least a few times. This helps you see the hazards your child might run into and track how long it takes your child to get from home to the school.

3. Practice

Before the school year starts, try practicing the route. Walk with your child several times, so he or she memorizes the route. Practice stopping and looking both ways, and talk about road safety.

These are a few tips that can help keep your child safe around the roads as a pedestrian. Teach your child safety now, so you can help prevent accidents.

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