Road Safety Unit calls for children to be engaged in road safety training
The Road Safety Unit (RSU) in the Ministry of Transport is appealing to parents and guardians to introduce their children to road safety training from the very early stages of development.
The call came after a fatal collision in Ocho Rios, St Ann on Monday, which claimed the life of a seven-year-old boy, who was hit by a car at the intersection of the Buckfield Road and the Ocho Rios bypass.
Little Keroy Borlan of Mansfield Green in Ocho Rios was walking with a relative along the roadway when he reportedly ran out into the road and was struck by the vehicle. He was later pronounced dead at hospital.
The RSU stressed the importance of adults accompanying children, especially those in the age group of five to nine years, when they have to venture into the traffic environment, since those in that age group do not have an adequately developed appreciation for proper road safety etiquette.
The unit noted that 21 children have been killed in traffic crashes nationally since the start of the year. The figure represents a 91 per cent increase when compared to the 11 recorded for the similar period in 2015.
Some 48 per cent of the children killed in collisions since the start of the year were passengers in private motor vehicles, while 24 per cent were pedestrians.
The unit has urged parents and guardians to invest in protective devices such as helmets, kneepads and elbow pads for children before allowing them to ride a bicycle in the public environment.
Parents and guardians are also being urged to ensure that their children wear seatbelts when travelling in vehicles; small children should be fitted in a child/infant carrier; and a booster seat should be used for those who are too old for infant carriers.
A total of 305 persons have lost their lives in 253 fatal crashes since the start of the year.