Kids under 10 or older, if they are more impulsive, MUST cross the street with an adult and not by themselves. They do not have your ability to judge the speed and distance of oncoming cars when they are younger. Always model safe behavior. Here are some other helpful points:
• Toddlers and preschoolers are never to be left alone anywhere near a street, and should never let go of your hand when you are in a parking lot or even going down a street and crossing driveways. Little kids are often invisible to drivers due to their height.
• School age children must never run into the street. Be specific and explain that they must never chase after a ball or other toy without stopping and looking first. When crossing the street, they must “Stop, Look and Listen” for traffic in both directions.
• Always cross where there are traffic signals and signs! Explain that this means at corners and in crosswalks, and even then, remain alert to traffic.
• Never go between parked cars to cross a street.
• Adolescents are risk-takers and more apt to be out after dark. If you live in a rural area, remind them to wear reflective clothing and walk or run facing traffic. Also, no devices when walking -— if they need to text, they need to stop to check it. It’s too easy to cross the road without looking when texting.
• All children need a heads-up when bad weather changes road conditions and visibility is poor and drivers have less stopping time.
In addition, here is a fun video to share with your kids — it explains the basics in a clear and straightforward manner:
Stillman and Friedland — because we care.