This Friday is National Walk Safely to School Day. Now in its 23rd year, the annual event has joined forces with National Road Safety Week (15 – 22 May) to further draw the spotlight on road safety and support the importance of regular walking, not just on 20 May, but every day.
National Walk Safely to School Day is a community initiative that aims to raise awareness of the health, road safety, transport and environmental benefits that regular walking (especially to and from school) can provide for the long-term well-being of our children. Apart from the physical benefits, regular walking also has a favourable impact on children's cognitive and academic performance.
Deputy Premier and Member for Bathurst Paul Toole is supporting this cause by encouraging all road users to drive with care.
“Every year, approximately 1,200 people are killed on our roads and thousands more are seriously injured. We can all learn something from this week’s messages of slowing down, driving to conditions, giving others space on the road and looking out for pedestrians,” said Mr Toole.
“We want everyone to be able to take to our roads with confidence that they will reach their destination safely, no matter the mode of transport. This starts with our youngest road users, school children, learning how to cross streets and walk to school safely, and that’s what Friday is all about.”
This year’s National Road Safety Week theme is ‘Everyone has a right to get home safe, every day – no exceptions’.
“It’s a critical message and one we want all road users in regional NSW to focus on,” said Mr Toole.
Top 5 tips for parents to get their kids walking to school:
1. Walk some or if you can, walk all the way to school
2. Get off the bus, train, or tram a few stops earlier and walk the rest of the way
3. Leave the car at least 1km away from school and walk the rest of the way
4. Set your alarm 30 minutes earlier to fit in a walk to school
5. If you can’t walk in the morning, walk home after school