Getting back into the swing of school is always an adjustment for kids, parents and all drivers on the road. Each fall in the United States, over 50 million children attend school and almost 15 % of these kids either walk or ride their bikes to and from school. Roads are more congested especially around schools and school drop off and pick-up hours. Driving, pedestrian, bicycle and school bus activities increase. Drivers need to be more vigilant and pay closer attention.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) statistics reflect that distracted drivers cause 10 percent of injury crashes. It is estimated that in the past year, about 3,500 people were killed and 400,000 were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving distracted drivers. Many of these distracted drivers are teens. For drivers 15 to 19 years old involved in fatal crashes, 21 percent of the distracted drivers were distracted by the use of cell phones, whether it was talking or texting. On average, texting takes your eyes off the road for 5 seconds. If you are driving at 55 mph., that is equivalent to driving the length of a football field with your eyes closed.
The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHSTA) reports that the fall season is the most dangerous time of year for pedestrians. Almost 30 percent of traffic fatalities in the autumn are pedestrian-related. With students returning to school, there is an increase in kids walking to and from school. School days bring an increase in traffic, congestion and inattentiveness. Kids on foot and on bikes are hurrying to and from school, not always paying enough attention or obeying traffic laws. Sometimes, parents rushing to drop off their kids are guilty of the same. More kids are hit by vehicles near schools than anywhere else.
Here are some ways you can more safely share the road with young pedestrians:
According to The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA Traffic Safety Facts), California leads the nation in bicycle crash fatalities at 128 per year. While bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as other roadway users and often share the same lane, bicycles can be difficult to see and are more vulnerable to accident, injury and even death. This is much more the case for children riding bicycles who are not often more difficult to see but often times lack the proper experience, skill, judgment and decision making in determining traffic conditions, risks and dangers.
Here are some ways you can more safely share the road with young bicyclists:
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration rates school buses as one of the safest forms of transportation. NHTSA Traffic Safety Facts reflect that riding a bus to school is 13 times safer for a child than riding in a motor vehicle and 10 times safer than walking to school. More children are hurt outside the school bus than while on it. Sadly, most children who die in school bus related crashes are 4-7 years old and are hit by a moving vehicle which is illegally passing a stopped school bus.
Here are some ways you can more safely share the road with school busses:
If your child has been involved in a pedestrian, bicycle ,bus or car accident resulting in injury or death, contact the Law Office of Frederick S. Schwartz for a free, no obligation, confidential consultation with the attorney.