Navigating across roads and through car parks safely can be precarious for adults let alone a toddler. So it is a good idea to start early in practising traffic safety rules with your little one. Even children up until the age of the 10 or more will need active adult supervision.
While our young ones may begin to remember the rules about crossing roads, they are unable to understand them no matter how many times they are told. It is important that toddlers are always held near roads and cars.
Tips for traffic safety are:
- Always hold your toddler’s hand near cars and when crossing roads
- Be sure to model safe road behaviour. Your toddler will learn what is acceptable by watching you. Always stop, look, listen and think before crossing the road
- Each time that you practice road safety behaviour, describe what you are doing so your toddler can begin to understand why it is important
- When getting your toddler in and out of the car it is essential to always use the kerbside passenger door
- When getting into the car with a baby and a toddler, put your toddler in first as they are more likely to vanish out of sight. When your toddler is securely in, then you can put your baby into the car
- When getting out of the car, safely take your baby out first, then your toddler.
Most toddler pedestrian deaths occur in driveways, and often in their own driveway. Children under two are most at risk of being hit or crushed by a reversing vehicle. Toddlers are unable to comprehend that cars can be dangerous and they can move suddenly and quietly. They often play games in driveways despite your attempts asking them to stop because they are absorbed in their games.
Here are some tips to keep your toddler safe in the driveway:
- Toddler proofing fences to your driveway or garage can prevent your toddler from running towards or behind your car
- When they are in a driveway your toddler should either be safely secured inside the car or supervised by an adult, holding their hand
- Your toddlers hand should always be held near cars, even if you are only walking to the letterbox or near a driveway.