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Feet First editorial - Wairarapa MidweekFeet First editorial - Wairarapa Midweek

We all have a “copy cat”

By Holly Hullena – Road Safety Coordinator / School Travel Planner

The age-old saying: “make good choices” comes to mind. Road Safety is particularly important this time of year as schools have started up and we are all vying for our space travelling to get there. In amongst this hustle and bustle, we tend to forget some of the basics in safety and we need to be able to take a breath, think and do the right thing as often we have children around us ready to follow in our footsteps.

Common things to remember to show our children how to stay safe:

  • Slow down! – if you are a rush, you may forget to double check for anyone crossing the road or a cyclist that is to your left. Children are often excited to see their friends. They may not be looking out for you.
  • Wear your seatbelt – make it click EVERYTIME. Ensure before you start up the car that all children in the vehicle are restrained properly. Children under 7 years of age must be in an approved child restraint.
  • Use the crossings – Make it a rule. Even if it is only a few metres in the opposite direction. Pedestrian crossings make sure you are seen and that vehicles stop for you.
  • Park your car properly – Don’t park on yellow lines or bus stops. It means you are obscuring the view of someone else’s child trying to cross the road properly. It doesn’t hurt to park down the road and allow your children to walk an extra 50 metres to the school gate. It will also allow them to grow some independence and you can still see them.
  • Use your “noggin” – Make sure you are wearing a helmet that fits you properly. Check your child is wearing theirs. If your child is under 10, cycle with them to school. Children do not develop their peripheral vision until they reach 10 years old. Their judgement to speed and perception is not great.
  • School Buses – Park your car on the same side of the road as the bus. Make sure when you are driving past a school bus that your speed is 20km (it’s the law). Talk to your children about the Curb-side drill.

 The world is a busy place, but there is no need to hurry when around the school gate. Nothing in this world is more precious than our children, so look out for them, look out for others and set a good example.


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