Be a role model and teach proper pedestrian behavior. Children under ten years old should never cross a street without an adult. Use discretion with older children based on their knowledge, skills and routes.
SET BOUNDARIES: Tell children where they can and cannot play. These boundaries can expand gradually as they get older. Always enforce these rules and be consistent.
TAKE A WALK: Walk with children and practice safe pedestrian skills. Practice the route to and from school or the bus stop with your child. Explain that motor vehicles are bigger and faster than they are. Stress the importance of crossing at corners and crosswalks. Show them how to stop at the curb or edge of the road. Teach children to look left, then right, then left again for traffic, and to continue looking as they cross the street. Children must also listen for traffic.
RULES FOR INTERSECTIONS: Explain to children the meaning of traffic signs and signals and show them how to use pedestrian walk and don't walk signals. Teach them to watch for cars making a turn.
SEE AND BE SEEN: Teach children how to make eye contact with drivers before they cross in front of a vehicle. Show them that they cannot see or be seen if they try to cross too close to parked cars. Teach children to look around parked cars and bushes that block their view. Dress children in white or bright colored clothing so they are more easily seen when outdoors. Use reflective materials and have them carry a flashlight at dusk or at night.
STREETS ARE FOR VEHICLES: Make it a rule not to play in the street. When walking on a street that has no sidewalks, teach children to stay along the side of the road or grass and walk facing traffic.
NO DASHING OUT: Tell children never to dash out into the road without stopping and looking for traffic. Explain how hard it is for a vehicle to stop quickly and a driver may not see them especially if there are parked cars or bushes around.