The importance of teaching your children road safety

Ensuring your child has a full grasp of the importance of road safety from an early age is crucial, not only to prevent accidents while they’re young, but also in the future when they’re operating on the road themselves.
In this article, we’ll take you through a few quick and simple ways to teach road safety.
The importance of holding hands
In the first few years of a child’s life it is relatively easy for you to keep them close as they’ll be contained by the straps of a pushchair, but when they do grow up and become a little more adventurous, holding hands with mommy or daddy is no longer cool. This is where you have to jump in and insist that holding hands, especially when crossing the road, is the safest thing to do.
There are a number of ways you can reinforce this behavior such as by creating a ‘hand in hands’ picture. Draw around the hands of both yourself and your child’s, put their cutout on top of yours and attach them with a split pin. This is a great team activity, where you can get the whole family involved to reinforce the idea of keeping hands together. Another game to play while you are walking along is to squeeze each other’s hand when you see a red car or a number plate with the letter 6 in, for example; the first one to squeeze wins!
The importance of crossing roads safely
Regardless of how old your children are, it is always important to teach them the safest way to cross a road. It comes down to seven key steps – find a safe place to cross; always stop at the kerb; look left; look right; look left one final time; and if the road is clear cross, but never run; as you cross keep listening for traffic. These steps are most crucial, and if taught at an early age they will potentially save their lives in the years to come.
The importance of safety gear
The first thing you should do when entering a car is instill the importance of the seatbelt. Buckle up your children before yourself to set a good example. If you see your child has taken off their seatbelt during the journey, pull up the car and place it back on. Make sure to remind your child that travelling without a seatbelt is very dangerous.
The same goes for any other safety gear, which you should bring attention to, especially motorcycle helmets if you have teenage children interested in motor bikes. Small comments can go a long way, so if you’re ever driving with your family and see somebody riding without a helmet, bring it up as a point of discussion and highlight that motorcycle helmets are critical when it comes to surviving an accident.
The importance of paying attention
With technology at its current state there are many ways a child can become distracted rather easily. Mobile phones now keep many children and teenagers occupied when walking – with many using their phones when crossing the road. To combat this, it is important you have a discussion with your children and insist they put their phones away, take off their headphones and pay full attention to the road when crossing.

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