“We must put children’s safety first”

06.00 | 19 June 2024 | | 2 comments

Brake is calling for measures to reduce traffic speeds around schools, on the back of a survey suggesting that parents believe roads aren’t safe for their children to walk or wheel to school.

According to the survey, published to coincide with the charity’s annual Kids Walk, more than three-quarters (78%) of parents and carers would like roads near their home and children’s schools to have a speed limit of 20mph.

In addition, 85% of those surveyed said they would like to see Government doing more to make roads safer in their community.

Of the 2,000 parents and carers of primary schoolchildren surveyed, more than two-thirds (69%) would like their children to walk or wheel to school more often, but many say they can’t because the roads are too busy (39%) and the traffic moves too fast (24%).

Today (19 June), 80,000 children (aged 4–11 years) from more than 720 schools and youth groups are taking part in Brake’s Kids Walk to shout out for their right to make safe and healthy journeys without fear or threat from traffic.

To coincide with the launch of the walk, Brake has highlighted the true extent of child casualties on the nation’s roads.

Government figures show that 6,075 children (aged 4-11 years) were harmed on UK roads in 2022; of these, 16 children died and a further 1,113 suffered serious injuries.

The data also shows that in 2022, 2,457 children were harmed while walking, 484 while cycling and 2,859 children while travelling by car.

The 80,000 schoolchildren taking part in Brake’s Kids Walk will complete a short, supervised walk around their schools and/or communities. They will carry banners and posters, provided by Brake, to help raise awareness of the five things they need to help keep them safe near roads: slower traffic, cleaner traffic, better footpaths, better cycle paths, and safe places to cross.

Lucy Straker, campaigns manager at Brake, said: “We all want children to be able to travel to and from school safely. But sadly, every day, more than 16 primary schoolchildren are harmed on our roads. We know that excess speed is a factor in about a quarter of fatal crashes – and the physics is pretty straightforward: the faster a vehicle is travelling, the harder it hits and the greater the impact.

“Evidence shows us that by lowering the speed limits and reducing the number of vehicles on our roads, we also reduce the risk of people being harmed. This new research from Brake also shows us that people want 20mph speed limits around their homes and their children’s schools.

“So, we call on the future leaders of our country to prioritise safety on roads across our communities, by implementing 20mph as the default speed limit on roads in residential and built-up areas. We must keep our children safe!”



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    I would be rather more impressed if this pressure group would provide full details of its survey and of its research. But there’s not a link in sight, despite the (somewhat inconsistent) assertions made in the article above.

    Fraser Andrew, STIRLING
    Agree (1) | Disagree (0)

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