Increased community involvement, pro-active approaches, and individual responsibility and actions are desperately needed to influence and change behaviours to stem the carnage on our roads.
Use traveling time with your children to teach them about road safety in a fun, interactive way.
“Young minds are impressionable and the sooner we start educating them about road safety, the better our chances of raising responsible road users and young drivers,” stressed N3TC’s commercial manager, Con Roux.
SANRAL and N3TC entered into a Concession Contract in 1999, which gave N3TC the responsibility to design, construct, finance, operate and maintain the N3 Toll Route for a period of 30-years.
In 2016 it was estimated that worldwide 1.25-million people die annually due to road crashes and a further 50-million people suffer varying degrees of injuries as a result thereof.
By 2030, road traffic crashes are expected to become the fifth–leading cause of global fatalities.
“Increased community involvement, pro-active approaches, and individual responsibility and actions are desperately needed to influence and change behaviours to stem the carnage on our roads,” explained Roux.
Role of parents and caregivers
Parents and caregivers can help turn this tide by modelling responsible behaviour and using children’s natural curiosity to start teaching them about safety and the rules of the road from a very young age.
Start by teaching your children the language of road safety by pointing out the various parts that make up roads such as pavements, emergency lanes, right, centre and left lanes, road signs, lighting, solid and broken lines, road and street names and more.
Also teach them about the different types of vehicles and people working on roads, from construction workers to cleaners, police, ambulances, traffic police and the fire brigade.
Make it fun by playing “I spy with my little eye” or counting games.
As children grow older and their knowledge and experience of roads develop, key safety messages can be shared and discussions evolve.
Even teens, who may think they “know it all” or may feel invincible, can benefit by playing out different scenarios and thinking about the type of actions or interventions they can take to achieve desired outcomes in different situations.
Roux said: “Remember to always be a good role model to your children, whether you are the driver or passenger in a vehicle, riding a bicycle or a pedestrian. Children imitate adults, most notably their parents or close family members.
“Let’s teach our children to be good citizens and to take responsibility for their actions. Ultimately, road safety is about stopping fatalities and serious injuries and it is crucial that we start taking it seriously. Your actions always speak louder than your words.”
Numerous resources are available online, at retail outlets and from community organisations to guide you and your children to be responsible road users.
Make sure you stay familiar with the rules of the road, what the common risks are and how to prevent these.
Always consider these when you get in a vehicle or on the road – practice makes perfect.