Step up to the school run: keep kids safe, says GEM

BREAKDOWN AND road safety organisation GEM Motoring Assist is urging parents and children to make safety their number one priority on journeys to and from school.

The new school year begins this week in England and Wales. GEM says it’s vital that everyone – from toddler to senior citizen – is aware of the risks that go with using our roads.

GEM chief executive Neil Worth comments: “A total of 54 children aged under 16 died on the UK’s roads in 2022, with a further 13,000 suffering serious injuries1. What’s more, 20 per cent of all injuries occur on school journeys2. That’s why it’s so important to help every child learn how to use the roads safely, whether walking, cycling or travelling in a vehicle.

“So as another school year begins, we encourage all parents, guardians, teachers, carers and older siblings to play their part in helping children to recognise the risks they face and to understand effective ways of reducing or even eliminating those risks.

“Walking to school is a great way of getting to know others, and it’s a fun, healthy way of getting those daily steps up. If walking’s not feasible, then ensure kids are suitably secured in the car and always park safely and legally.”

Reduce the risk
GEM has compiled a selection of tips for parents and their children as the new school year begins:

  • It’s cool to be bright: kit your kids out with reflective belts and bags, or choose coats with fluorescent piping.
  • Walk or cycle to school if you can. Find out about any local safe walking initiatives that may operate at your child’s school. Team up with neighbours and walk together.
  • If you have to drive to school, please allow plenty of time to park safely and legally. Don’t pull up on zig-zag lines outside a school, and respect local residents by not blocking driveways and access points. Also, never let children step out of the car into the road.
  • Work out the safest routes and the most appropriate places to cross any roads.
  • Respect speed limits. Many areas around schools are subject to 20mph speed limits (either permanent or timed), and you will face a £100 fine and three points on your licence if you are caught speeding.
  • Respect the crossing patrol. Be patient and always be prepared to stop. Remember, it’s an offence not to stop at a patrol’s signal.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Skip to content