The United Nations (UN) Global Road Safety Week is 6‐12 May 2013. Safekids Aotearoa and FedEx are asking everyone to help make the week child fatality‐free by doing a ‘Long Short Walk’.
According to the UN and the World Health Organisation (WHO), more than 5,000 pedestrians are killed on the world’s roads each week. Many of those killed are children walking to and from schools. In New Zealand, an average of eight child pedestrians die every year, and a further 107 children are injured severely enough to be hospitalised.
To address this major injury issue, the UN, WHO, Safekids and FedEx are asking community groups, private organisations, Councils, walking school buses and schools to help make Road Safety Week fatality‐free by organising a ‘Long Short Walk’.
“The Long Short Walk is a fun activity with a serious aim. We want you to take a short walk in your community and take a video or photograph of a dangerous road or intersection,” said Safekids Director Ann Weaver.
Photos can be uploaded in the Long Short Walk website (www.longshortwalk.org). Combined with snapshots from around the world, they will provide a glimpse of the risky journeys children take. “The short term goal of the Long Short Walk is to prevent even a single pedestrian fatality during the week” Ms Weaver said.
“The long term goal is to advocate for the right of all children to be safe pedestrians. Hopefully this will urge governments around the world to make greater investment in safe footpaths, cycle‐ways and crossing points, and on streets with lower speed limits, especially around schools,” Ms Weaver added.
Parents, children and drivers can also help prevent fatalities and injuries during Road Safety Week by following these safety messages:
- Use and respect pedestrian crossings and controlled intersections.
- Use existing, or establish new Walking School Buses.
- Develop school travel plans
- Slow down for children getting on or off school buses ‐ the law says 20 kph (in both directions).
- Check for children before driving off, especially along driveways
For a signboard template or more information about organising a Long Short Walk in your community or school, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
09 631 0717