“The percentage of students walking or biking to school has decreased dramatically over time, from 42 percent in 1969 to only 10 percent in 2017” (next city).
According to a study by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Time, convenience, distance, weather and safety were barriers to walking or biking to school”. Safety is one of the larger areas of concern when it comes to having your children walk or bike to school. Children’s National stated that “In 2014, over 400 children were injured every day in traffic crashes”’
The goal is to make walking and biking to school safer and more normalized.
“At an individual level, walking and biking can boost students’ health, physical activity, and even their concentration in school.” Walking and biking would also play a positive environmental role in decreasing the number cars on the road.
Here are some tips provided by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration on making biking and walking to School safer so that we can better the health of our children and our environment
- “Use the sidewalk whenever possible, and if there isn’t a sidewalk, walk on the edge of the street facing traffic.
- Whenever they are available, use marked crosswalks to cross the street, and look left-right-left for vehicles or bikes before crossing.
- Make sure you never play, push or shove others when you walk around traffic.
- Everyone should watch the road, not their phones.
- Children under 10 should be accompanied while walking”
- “Always wear a correctly fitted helmet, and securely fasten the chin strap.
- Ride in the same direction as traffic, and follow traffic signs and signals.
- Stay in the bike lane whenever possible.
- Never use electronics while riding – they are distracting.”