As we continue to have some nice fall days, children are often outside enjoying the last lingering days of good weather; perhaps taking walks around the neighborhood or riding scooters and bicycles with their friends. Unfortunately, sometimes tragedy can strike and lives are changed in an instant. Let’s take a moment to recall these unfortunate tragedies that occured right here in Indianapolis near the end of summer: two young children struck by cars with one losing his life.
According to the CDC, in 2012, 4,743 pedestrians were killed in traffic crashes in the United States, with another 76,000 pedestrians being injured. In addition, more than one in every five children between the ages of 5 and 15 who were killed in traffic crashes were pedestrians. With the number of cars being on the roads now at over 253 million, and increasing every year; both drivers and pedestrians need to be ever watchful for each other.
As parents, we need to continue to do our best to provide for our children’s safety. If they are riding a bicycle or scooter, having them wear safety gear, including a helmet, can increase their chances of surviving being struck by a vehicle. In addition, if they are walking in the evening, having them wear reflective clothing or carrying a flashlight is another way to help keep them safe, as they will be seen by vehicles more easily. We also need to teach our children bicycle safety, in addition to pedestrian safety; looking both ways before crossing the street, using crosswalks or stop signs to cross if at all possible and teaching them to be aware of their surroundings. And while accidents are not always preventable, we can strive to educate and protect ourselves and our children as much as possible. Let’s all pitch in to make Indy as safe as possible!