Kids can’t evaluate their distance to approaching vehicles or their speed until around 10 years old. That’s why road safety is especially important for them. And it’s not just cars that can be dangerous for a child on the street.
How to behave at nighttime
- If you know you are going to arrive home late at night, ask someone to meet you. When leaving home, always tell others when you will be back.
- If you need to go out in the dark, try to go with other people and cross the street in a group.
- Do not walk through the park, the forest, or any other poorly lit and uninhabited places.
How to behave with strangers
- Never go with a stranger, even if they pretend to be a friend of your parents.
- Do not take anything from strangers.
- If a stranger asks you for help, do not help them yourself, call another adult to help them.
How to behave on the road
- Learn to understand car signals — like a beep, a siren, and “turn signals.”
- Try to not walk on the road behind parked cars — they block your view of the road.
- If there is no sidewalk, it’s better to walk on the road in a way that allows you to face the cars coming toward you, so you can always see and have time to react if someone veers off the road.
How to behave on public transportation
- Only wait for public transportation at the designated stops, no closer than one meter from the roadway.
- Never ride in unknown vehicles and don’t get into cars with strangers.
- On public transportation, get closer to the driver so that they can see you. Do not enter into conversations with unfamiliar passengers and do not tell anyone where you are going and where you live.
How to behave in dangerous situations
- If it seems that someone is chasing you, you should immediately proceed to a crowded place. You can go to a store or any other place and contact an adult.
- If you find yourself around noisy or drunk groups of people, go to the other side of the street and do not get into conflicts.
- If a stranger suddenly tries to grab you, scream “That is not my mom (or dad)!”
How to behave with stray animals
- Don’t tease stray animals, because they can attack you.
- Don’t run from dogs.
- Retreat slowly, facing the dog.
Bonus for parents: What you can do
- If your child has to make their way home without adult supervision, come up with a permanent and safe route with them. Agree with the child that they will always walk on this particular road.
- Specify the boundaries for the surroundings where the child will walk home.
How often does your child walk alone on the street? What other street safety rules do you know? You can share your recommendations with other parents in the comments.