Road safety professionals and emergency services across the UK are getting involved in Road Safety Week 2010, co-ordinated by the charity Brake, helping to raise awareness about the vital importance of slowing down in communities and other key road safety issues.
A national survey of 15,531 9-13 year-olds launched for Road Safety Week by Brake and business insurance specialist QBE finds that almost nine in 10 children (86%) think drivers go too fast around their homes and schools. Shockingly, one in 10 children (10%) say they have been knocked down while walking or cycling; a further 56% have had a near miss, and 16% more have had a frightening experience with traffic.
Hundreds of road safety professionals and emergency services, along with schools and community groups, are running awareness-raising activities to urge drivers to slow down to 20mph or below around schools, homes and shops. At 20mph, drivers have a good chance of stopping in time if a child runs out three car lengths in front.
Brake is calling on the Government to put in place a strategy and targets to continue bringing child deaths and serious injuries down - with a long term goal to reduce them to zero - and to make communities safer for families to walk and cycle without fear of fast traffic. Brake believes that lowering the default urban limit to 20mph and ensuring speed limits are enforced are key steps towards this.
Julie Townsend, campaigns director at Brake, says: "For a society that places so much importance on the safety and wellbeing of our children, it is shocking and unacceptable that so many children die and suffer appalling injuries on our roads. Road safety professionals and emergency services know only too well the vital importance of drivers slowing down to 20mph around schools and homes to protect children - so we're delighted that so many are getting involved in Road Safety Week and helping to spread this life-saving message, tying their crucial work in to a national event."