GEM Motoring Assist is urging parents and children to make safety their number one priority on journeys to and from school.
With the new school year beginning next week, GEM says it’s vital that everyone – from toddler to senior citizen – is aware of the risks associated with using the roads.
GEM points to statistics which show that more than 130 children die and another 4,500 are seriously injured every year while cycling or walking on the UK’s roads. Further to that, 20% of all child injuries occur on school journeys.
In a press release issued on Wednesday (30 August), the road safety charity published a series of tips for parents as the new school year begins.
These include encouraging children to wear hi-vis clothing, respecting speed limits and school crossing patrols, and not parking on zig-zag lines.
GEM is also encouraging parents to find out about any local safe walking initiatives that may operate at their child’s school.
Neil Worth, GEM road safety officer, said: “Every child needs to learn how to use the roads safely, whether walking or cycling, and later when driving. But road accidents remain a leading cause of accidental death for children.
“That’s why it is so important for us all to take responsibility – not just for our own safety but for the safety of any children who share the roads with us – and find ways to reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries.
“So as another school year begins, we encourage all parents, guardians, teachers, carers and older siblings to play their part in helping children to use the roads with respect, to recognise the risks they face and to understand effective ways of minimising those risks.”