Speed kills – especially children

In the European Region there is no greater threat to the lives of children aged 5–17 years than a road traffic crash. The likelihood of death from road traffic injuries among children in low- and middle-income countries is almost twice as high as among those in high-income countries. Children are vulnerable as road users, whether as pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists or car occupants. To combat this relentless loss of daily life, the global campaign proposes ten strategies to keep children safe on the roads. These strategies are:

  1. controlling speed on all roads, and in particular enforcing a maximum speed limit of 30 km per hour on roads with high concentrations of pedestrians;
  2. reducing drinking and driving to protect children from this major threat;
  3. using helmets for bicyclists and motorcyclists to reduce the risk of serious head injury;
  4. restraining children in vehicles by using infant car seats, child car seats, booster seats and seat-belts appropriate for a child’s age;
  5. improving children’s visibility through wearing reflective strips, using headlamps on bicycles and motorbikes, appointing crossing guards around schools and enhancing street lighting;
  6. enhancing road infrastructure to slow traffic and separate different types of road users, and creating car free zones;
  7. adapting vehicle design to make safer cars for passengers and pedestrians;
  8. reducing risks for young drivers by introducing graduated driver licensing schemes;
  9. providing appropriate care for injured children with equipment and staff trained to treat         children;
  10. supervising children around roads, to complement the other measures.

To read more about these strategies, click here on www.who.int

To read the Global Status Report on Road Safety 2013, click here on www.euro.who.int