3 March 2020
A new RAC survey has shed light on the school drop-off and pick-up experience, with parents revealing an alarming level of distracted driving, speeding and near-misses outside Perth schools.
More than 70% of parents surveyed had witnessed a distracted driver and 53% have seen a near-miss involving a person walking or cycling during the school drop-off and pick-up in the past 12 months.
And despite the growing trend of parents driving their kids to school, the survey revealed that only 55% of parents believed that their school drop-off and pick up was ‘safe’ or ‘very safe’.
Combining the chaotic congestion and parking issues around schools with plummeting rates of physical activity by children in Australia, the importance of infrastructure programs such as the Department of Transport’s Safe Active Streets Program has never been more critical to ensure that our kids have safer routes to walk and cycle to school.
Back in 2011, Dr Jan Garrard in her article on why more Australian kids aren’t cycling to school, suggested that Australia has developed a culture where parents feel they need to “keep their children safe from cars by keeping them in cars”.
Safe active streets are designed to create slow-speed and traffic-calmed road environments to create safe and inviting walking and riding routes through suburbs and provide links to local amenities such as schools, parks and shops.
Even for those families where walking and cycling to school may not be an option, we all need to work together to make sure that we are keeping those kids who do choose healthy active transport, safe. This can be achieved if we support the construction of safer roads and by slowing down and staying alert when driving around our schools.
To read the full report, please visit:
Articles you might also be interested in:
- How can our schools achieve zero? https://westcycle.org.au/how-can-our-schools-achieve-zero/
- Safe Active Street Program – https://westcycle.org.au/safe-active-streets-program/
- Why aren’t more kids cycling to school? (external link) – https://theconversation.com/why-arent-more-kids-cycling-to-school-3531
Video: A proposed Safe Active Street in the City of Melville.