South Africa has one of the highest rates of child road deaths in the world. One way to prevent these senseless fatalities is by teaching children road safety from a very young age.
Stop, look, listen
The Green Cross code is a well-known method of teaching children how to safely cross the road. There are a few variations on this code, but the principles are the same:
- Stop – find the safest place to cross the road and stop just before getting to the kerb or side of the road.
- Look – look carefully in both directions. If there are any cars, trucks, taxis, cycles or other vehicles approaching, wait for them to pass and then look again before crossing the road.
- Listen – sometimes traffic can be heard before it’s seen. This is why it is dangerous for pedestrians to wear headphones or earphones.
Walk on the pavement
Teach children to use the pavement rather than to walk on the side of the road. Even if the street is quiet, it’s always safest on the pavement.
Use pedestrian crossings
Children can be impulsive and simply dash across the road. Teach them to only cross at an intersection and use the pedestrian crossing. If there are no crossings marked on a road, they must follow the stop, look and listen code.