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ICBC's tips for parents and drivers in time for back to school

Car crashes are the top preventable cause of death for B.C. children

September 22, 2014


As children head back to school, ICBC is encouraging parents to review the rules of the road with their children and go over their daily route to and from school.

In B.C., on average, five child pedestrians aged five to 18 are killed and 290 injured in 270 car crashes every year.*

ICBC provides free road safety educational materials to B.C. schools to help students learn about road safety using fun and interactive activities. The materials are unique to each grade level from kindergarten to grade 10. To find out more, visit icbc.com/4teachers.

Tips for children and parents:

Visit icbc.com to print our child pedestrian safety tips and post them in your home. Review the tips with your children – even older children need to be reminded about road safety.

Here are our top tips:

  • Map it out. Plan your child's walking route with them ahead of time. Review street names and landmarks to orient them.

  • Quiz time. Make a fun, interactive game out of guessing the correct traffic signs and meanings with your child.

  • Set a good example. Never jaywalk or run to cross the street. Where possible, cross at intersections with a pedestrian crossing light or marked crosswalk.

  • Look. Make sure all vehicles have stopped before entering the road. Make eye contact with drivers before crossing, even if the walk signal is on.

  • Listen. Put away the electronic gadgets, cell phone and ear buds so you can hear approaching traffic that may be hard to see.

  • Be seen. Wear bright clothes and/or reflective gear especially at night and in poor weather.

Tips for drivers:

  • Every school day, unless otherwise posted, a 30-km/hr speed limit is in effect in school zones from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

  • When you're dropping off your children in school zones, allow them to exit the car on the side closest to the sidewalk. Never allow a child to cross mid-block.

  • If a vehicle's stopped in front of you or in the lane next to you, they may be yielding to a pedestrian, so be prepared to stop.

  • Watch for school buses. Vehicles approaching from both directions must stop for school buses when their lights are flashing.

  • Before getting into your vehicle, walk around your vehicle to make sure no small children are behind it. Always look for pedestrians when you're backing up.

Regional statistics:

  • In the Lower Mainland, on average, three child pedestrians aged five to 18 are killed and 200 injured in 190 crashes every year.*

  • In Vancouver, on average, one child pedestrian aged five to 18 is killed and 40 are injured and in 38 crashes every year.

  • On Vancouver Island, on average, one child pedestrian aged five to 18 is killed and 41 are injured in 38 crashes every year.*

  • In the Southern Interior, on average, one child pedestrian aged five to 18 is killed and 31 are injured in 30 crashes every year.*

  • In North Central B.C., on average, one child pedestrian aged five to 18 is killed and 12 injured in 12 crashes every year.*

*Annual crash and injury averages based on 2009 to 2013 data reported by ICBC. Annual fatal average based on 2009 to 2013 police-reported data.

Media contact:
Lindsay Olsen
604-982-4759