Pedestrian Safety

Each year approximately 50 Canadian children are killed and more than 1000 are hospitalized as a result of pedestrian injuries. 5 – 9 year olds are the age group most at risk for pedestrian deaths. When children are away from home they are more at risk of pedestrian injury. For example, when children who live in rural areas visit the city, and when children from the city visit rural areas, safety awareness is more important.

Children are more at risk for pedestrian injuries because:

They don’t understand the dangers from cars
They think that drivers will see them
Children have trouble judging distance and speed
Their peripheral vision is not fully developed
Drivers can not see them because of their height

Quick Tips for Parents and Caregivers

Find ways to practice safety during the child’s daily activities – walks to the park, store, or school.

Set a good example! Children will copy behavior good or bad.
Tell babysitters, grandparents and neighbors the same message you tell the children.
Remember that children judge distance, speed, and sounds differently then adults.
Be patient and praise, praise, praise (adapted from the KIDestrians™ Program, 1992)

KIDestrians™ is:

A unique program that takes into account the reality of traffic and children’s behaviour.
A pedestrian safety program for children ages 18 months to 8 years.
A step by step guide that outlines 12 fun lessons that parents and caregivers can practice with young children.
KIDestrians™ makes it easy to help children learn and practice pedestrian safety in a range of settings.
KIDestrians™ is a registered trademark of the Trauma Prevention Council


Cycling educational programs are available for children and caregivers through bicycle safety events such as school and community bicycle rodeos and resources such pamphlets and videos. Assistance with developing safe cycling policies and environments are also available to communities.

Tips to parents for safe cycling ensure that children:

Wear a helmet while cycling
Have a bike that fits properly and is well maintained
Know the skills to handle a bike
Know the rules of the road
Ride on routes appropriate to the child’s age and skill level