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Road safety expert applauds 'Giant Walking Bus'
A specialist in road collision injuries has voiced her support for the more than 120,000 children who took part in a UK-wide march this week aimed at urging drivers to slow down.
Joanna Bailey was speaking after the annual ‘Giant Walking Bus’, co-ordinated by the national road safety charity, Brake, took place involving primary school children from 600 different schools up and down the country simultaneously marching in supervised ‘human crocodiles’, saying yes to safe walking and no to speeding traffic.
“This wonderful event is part of Brake's ‘Kids Say Slow Down’ campaign which aims to promote safe walking practices and teach children about the dangers of traffic,” said Joanna, who for many years has represented victims injured in serious road collisions. “This campaign is invaluable as it helps to raise thousands of pounds to support the hundreds of bereaved families who lose loved ones each year on our roads.
“The 'school run' now accounts for 24 per cent of peak-time car journeys in urban areas,” added Joanna, a partner with the firm. “At a time when more and more children are being driven to school, leading to increasing traffic levels and more children being put at risk of involvement in collisions as a result, projects like this aim to raise awareness about just how important it is for children to be able to safely walk or cycle to and from school each day.”
In London and the South-East alone - where according to the latest government statistics, more than 30 children are knocked down and injured by traffic each week - over 30,000 children from 113 schools, took part in this weeks march, calling on drivers to do more to protect their safety by driving no faster than 20mph around schools, homes and shops.
“The UK sadly has one of the worst child death rates in Europe for children who are killed on foot, many of whom are killed while on their way to school,” said Joanna. “Research has shown that 20mph limits are widely effective in protecting children travelling on foot as drivers have a far better chance at stopping in the event of an emergency. If a child steps into the road, three car lengths ahead of a car travelling at 30mph, the driver would barely have time to hit the brakes let alone stop in time, significantly increasing the chances of causing death or serious injuries.
"All kids should be able to walk to school and around their neighbourhoods without having their lives endangered by speeding drivers,” added Joanna. “The Giant Walking Bus is all about giving these kids a voice. Traffic is the biggest non-medical cause of death to UK children and too many families are being devastated as a result. This is unacceptable and it is high time the government steps in and reduces the urban default speed limit from 30mph to 20mph.”
How can Fentons help?
Fentons has a specialist department experienced in handling claims for victims of road traffic collisions.
If you think that you have a case or require further information contact Fentons on 0800 0191 297 or fill in the online claims questionnaire.
Read more: Brake
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