Summer is nearly over once again, and that means it’s time for kids to head back to school.
Yet, as excited as children may be to get back to their friends and teachers, it’s also important you take the time to go over some safety rules with them.
Unfortunately, children are involved in motor vehicle accidents every day in the U.S. In 2020, an average of 380 children were injured in vehicle accidents each day.
Know and review the following transportation safety tips with any child under your care before school starts to prevent their risk of injury during their daily commute.
School Bus Safety Tips for Kids
Many children rely on school buses as their primary means of getting to and from school. While school buses are relatively safe, there are a few safety measures you should make children aware of:
- When waiting at the bus stop, never play in the road or close to the street.
- Make sure everything they need for the day is secured inside their backpack so they don’t risk dropping anything as they enter or exit the bus.
- Don’t approach the school bus until it has come to a complete stop.
- Never stand up while the bus is in motion, this includes preparing to exit the bus.
- Don’t shout or distract the bus driver while they are driving.
- If the child has to walk in front of the bus, they should walk well in front of it so that the bus driver can see them. Bus drivers cannot see immediately in front of the vehicle, and may not be
- able to see up to 10 feet in front of the bus.
- If it is dark out or raining when your child will be at the bus stop, make sure they are wearing brightly colored or reflective raincoats or clothing so other drivers can easily see them.
- Children should never get off at a stop other than the one assigned to them.
Car Safety Tips for Transporting Kids to and from School
If you plan to drive children to school each day, be aware of these safety tips to avoid any potentially dangerous situations:
- Ensure all children under eight years old are securely buckled into an age-appropriate car seat or booster seat. Buckle booster seats and car seats into the back seats of your vehicle only.
- Never place a child’s booster seat in the front seat of the car.
- Don’t allow children 12 years old or younger to ride in the front seat.
- Make sure older children are wearing their seat belts correctly.
- Never leave children alone in a vehicle, even if it’s just for a moment.
- Don’t drop children off across the street from their school. Drop each child off directly at their building.
- Always remain alert to watch for other children entering the school building. Never look at your phone while operating your vehicle in a school zone.
Carpool Safety Tips for Kids
If a child under your care will be carpooling with another parent or family friend during the school year, make sure to talk about these important safety tips with the child:
- Always remain seated and buckled in while in the vehicle.
- Never get off at a drop-off location other than their own.
- Never, under any circumstances, should the child get into a vehicle with a driver they don’t know, even if the person says the carpooling driver sent them.
- Let the child know to report any behavior that makes them uncomfortable to you. This includes behaviors like texting while driving, driving in ways that make the child feel unsafe, etc.
Starting Off the School Year Right
The start of a new school year is a time to be excited about things to come. The children under your care will make new friends, learn new and exciting information, and grow a little bit more throughout the coming year. Make sure they have every opportunity to experience the school year in a safe and positive way by talking to them about these precautions early on.
If you or someone else you know experiences an injury, or cares for a child who experiences an injury, as a result of another party’s negligence, reach out to The Champion Firm for a free consultation of your case.