Whether children walk, ride their bicycle or take the bus to school, it is extremely important that they take proper safety precautions. Here are some tips from the National Safety Council to share with children to ensure their safety when traveling to school.
WALKING TO SCHOOL
Walk to school with a group of kids and always have a responsible adult with you.
Always walk on the sidewalk if one is available.
If no sidewalk is available, walk facing the traffic.
The safest place to cross is at a street corner or intersection.
If you are 10-years-old or younger, you need to cross the street with an adult. You should not cross by yourself.
Before you step off the curb to cross the street, stop and look all ways to see if cars are coming.
When no cars are coming, it is safe for you and an adult to cross. But look left-right-left as you do it, and hold the adult's hand.
Walk, don't run. This gives time for drivers to see you before you enter the roadway. Running also makes you more likely to fall in the street.
Don't dart out in front of a parked car. The driver of the car coming down the street will not be able to see you.
RIDING A BICYCLE TO SCHOOL
Always wear your helmet when riding your bicycle.
Make sure that your helmet fits correctly. The helmet should fit low on your forehead so that two fingers fit between it and your eyebrows. Another way to check is to put the helmet on your head and look up. If you can't see your helmet, it is too far back.
To ride safely, you need to know the rules of the road. If you don't, then you should not ride in traffic or without an adult.
Ride on the right side of the road or trail in a single file line in the same direction as other vehicles and come to a complete stop before crossing streets.
Wait for a driver's signal before crossing the street.
When you ride your bicycle, you should wear bright colors during the day and right before the sun rises or sets.
Riding at night can be dangerous. If you have to ride your bicycle at night, you should ride with an adult. You should have a white light on the front of your bicycle and a red reflector on the back. You also can get lights and reflective materials to put on your shoes, helmet and clothing.
Practice makes you more skilled at riding your bicycle. The more skilled you are at riding, the less likely you will be to crash. Practice riding skills in an empty parking lot or a place with no traffic. Practice such things as riding in a straight line, looking over your shoulder, signaling with your hands and starting and stopping.
RIDING THE BUS TO SCHOOL
Getting on the school bus
When the bus arrives, stand at least three giant steps (6 feet) away from the curb.
If you have to cross the street in front of the bus, walk on the sidewalk or along the side of the road until you are five giant steps (10 feet) ahead of the bus. Then you can cross the street.
Be sure the bus driver can see you and you can see the bus driver.
Never walk behind the bus.
If you drop something near the bus, tell the bus driver. Never try to pick it up first because the driver may not be able to see you.
Getting off the school bus
If you have to cross the street in front of the bus, walk at least ten feet ahead of the bus along the side of the road until you can turn around see the driver.
Make sure the bus driver can see you.
Wait for a signal from the driver before beginning to cross.
When the driver signals, walk across the road keeping an eye out for sudden traffic changes.
Do not cross the center line of the road until the driver has signaled that it is safe for you to begin walking.
Stay away from the wheels of the bus at all times.