MILWAUKEE (10/2/2012) - Pedestrian injuries are the second leading cause of unintentional injury-related death among children ages 5 to 14. Children younger than 10 never should cross the street alone. Make sure your children follow these safety guidelines when walking to school:
- Choose the safest route and walk it with your children. Look for the most direct route with the fewest street crossings. Advise them to take the same route every day and avoid shortcuts.
- Obey all traffic signals and markings. A "walk" sign is not an automatic "go" signal. It means you have permission to cross, but you must first stop and look both ways.
- Stop at the curb or edge of the road and to look left, right and left again for traffic before and while crossing.
- Never enter the street from between parked cars or from behind bushes or shrubs. Darting into the street accounts for the majority of pedestrian deaths among children.
- Cross the street at corners or crosswalks. Make sure children allow plenty of time to cross. Teach them to walk, not run, across intersections. Tell your children to listen to adult crossing guards and safety patrols.
- Warn children to be extra alert in bad weather. Visibility might be poor and motorists might not be able to stop quickly.
- Demonstrate proper pedestrian safety by being a good role model. Your children need you to tell them and show them how to be safe.
International Walk to School Day is Wednesday, Oct. 3. Communities across Wisconsin will participate in Walk This Way events. Safe Kids Southeast Wisconsin Coalition will partner with Milwaukee-area organizations and school districts to walk children to school. Classroom activities also will be conducted to teach children important walking safety tips.
"Walking is an important and healthy activity, but everyone needs to do their part to keep this activity safe for kids," said Lisa Klindt Simpson, Safe Kids Southeast Wisconsin coordinator. "Parents and caregivers should teach children safe behaviors, and drivers must be aware and on the lookout for children on or near the road."
Volunteers will walk children to school in order to demonstrate important safety behaviors as part of International Walk to School Day 20112
Wednesday, Oct. 3
7:30 a.m.: Brown Street Academy. Parents and students will meet at the Tot Lot Pavilion at Johnson Park (18th and West Brown streets in Milwaukee). They will walk to their school located at 2029 N. 20th St.
7:50 a.m.: Kosciuszko Elementary School. Parents and students will meet at two locations: Sheridan Inn parking lot on the corner of Lake Drive and Pulaski Avenue, and Pulaski Park on Swift Avenue north of Grange Avenue, and walk to their school, located at 5252 S. Kirkwood Ave.
7:45 a.m.: Parkview Elementary School. Parents and students will meet at two locations: the corner of Nicholson and Edgerton avenues, and Grange and Barland avenues, and walk to their school, located at 5555 S. Nicholson Ave.
8 a.m.: J. E. Jones Elementary School. Parents and students will meet at Grange and Swift avenues and walk to their school, located at 5845 S. Swift Ave.
7:50 a.m.: General Mitchell Elementary School. Parents and students will meet at three locations: Barland and Ramsey avenues, Iona Terrace and Illinois Avenue, and Eaton Lane and Illinois Avenue, and walk to their school, located at 5950 S. Illinois Ave.
8 a.m.: Lincoln Elementary School. Parents and students will meet at three locations: Packard and Layton avenues, Lipton and Allerton avenues, and Hately and Allerton avenues, and walk to their school, located at 4416 S. Packard Ave.
The following schools in Washington County also are participating in Walk This Way:
Decorah Elementary School, 1225 Sylvan Way, West Bend.
Green Tree School, 1330 Green Tree Road, West Bend.
Fair Park Elementary School, 519 N. Indiana Ave., West Bend.
Barton Elementary School, 614 School Place, West Bend.
For starting locations and times, contact Michelle Large, Washington County Health Department, at (262) 335-4742.
A member of Safe Kids Worldwide, Safe Kids Southeast Wisconsin works to prevent accidental injuries, the leading cause of death among children 14 years of age and younger. The four-county (Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Washington, Waukesha) coalition combines the expertise of community agencies and individuals to prevent childhood injuries through collaboration, education, policy and advocacy initiatives. Children's Hospital of Wisconsin is its lead agency. For more information, call (866) 228-5670.
Children's Hospital of Wisconsin is the region's only independent health care system dedicated solely to the health and well-being of children. The hospital, with locations in Milwaukee and Neenah, Wis., is recognized as one of the leading pediatric health care centers in the United States. Children's Hospital provides primary care, specialty care, urgent care, emergency care, community health services, foster and adoption services, child and family counseling, child advocacy services and family resource centers. In 2010, Children's Hospital invested more than $105 million in the community to improve the health status of children through medical care, advocacy, education and pediatric medical research. Children's Hospital achieves its mission in part through donations from individuals, corporations and foundations and is proud to be a Children's Miracle Network Hospitals. For more information, visit the website at chw.org.