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40% of parents call for stronger focus on road safety

Just over half of parents surveyed (56%) feel their local roads are not safe for their child to walk to school alone. Over a third (35%) stated this was due to their concerns about traffic and public transport, while 27 per cent stated they did not feel it was safe for their child to walk alone until they are older, and nearly a fifth (18%) were not confident that their children would steer clear of distractions.

Surprisingly, just under half (47%) of parents believe they do not hold primary responsibility for teaching their children about road safety, with 32 per cent believing this duty lies with schools, and 15 per cent seeing it as the role of the UK government. 80 per cent of parents surveyed felt their children’s schools could be doing more to educate their children on road safety.

Matthew Mycock, Autoglass® managing director, comments: "While we believe everyone plays a role in ensuring road safety awareness amongst children, we support any methods, by any group, to educate children further. With the nights getting darker, road safety awareness amongst children is more critical as they travel to and from school. We urge both schools and parents to give as much guidance to children as possible.”

Despite the disparities between who holds responsibility for road safety education, the survey found 95 per cent of parents followed some form of practical activities with their children. The most popular actions, carried out by around half of all parents, are to always use a pedestrian crossing or zebra crossing if there is one, as well as to set a good example, such as waiting for the green mansymbol when at pedestrian crossings.

Julie Townsend, deputy chief executive at Brake, the UK road safety charity, says, “While it’s comforting to see most parents take time to educate children on using roads, it’s vital we do more to enable children to walk and cycle safely. Parents and schools have a critical role in teaching kids the road safety basics, but even more importantly, we need to work together to make our roads safer for kids. It’s about getting the message across to drivers to slow down to protect children, and campaigning for life-saving measures like pavements and lower speed limits. By working with Brake on these issues, schools, parents and community leaders can make a big difference in allowing kids in your area to get out and about without fear or threat.”

Brake and Autoglass® are encouraging schools to run a Bright Day this autumn to raise awareness among children and the wider community about road safety and raise funds for Brake. Find out more at Schools get a free resource pack, and are signed up to Brake’s road safety news bulletin for educators.

The top three measures parents would like local authorities to undertake are:

Putting road safety measures in place on local roads, such as better or more pavements

Offering pedestrian and / or cyclist training in schools

Lowering the speed limit within their communities.

Within schools, the top three measures parents would like to see introduced are:

Road safety as part of lessons

Projects where pupils develop their own road safety plans, campaigns or materials

Training on how to cross roads safely

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