Walking

The Facts

Walking is good for us. By opting to go on foot, we are helping the environment.

But some pedestrians, such as the very young and the old, are particularly vulnerable when around our roads.

41% of pedestrians killed each year are over 60.

An average of three under-5s are killed or injured on Scotland’s roads every single day. Just under half of them are pedestrians.

Boys are much more likely to lose their life in a road accident than girls.

The risk increases when children move from primary to secondary school.

41% of pedestrians killed each year are over 60.

Things to consider

There are things we can do to minimise the risks.

Older pedestrians

  • Try to avoid rush hour when traffic is heavy.
  • Give yourself extra time for your journey. Then you won’t be rushed or tempted to make careless decisions
  • Cross at safe places like zebra and pelican crossings if you can. Don’t assume all cars will stop at a red light. Be sure it’s safe before you cross.
  • If you have glasses or a hearing aid, then make sure you wear them when you head out.

Children

There are lots of safe places to cross, encourage children to use them. Look for:

  • Pelican Crossings
  • Puffin Crossings
  • Toucan Crossings
  • Zebra Crossings
  • Subways
  • Footbridges
  • Traffic Islands
  • School Crossing Patrols.

If there isn’t a safe crossing, find a good place away from parked cars where you can see what’s coming on both sides of the road.

Changing from primary to secondary school often brings new safety challenges. Try the route with your child before they start secondary school. Make sure they are familiar with the route and where the safest places are to cross.

Walking with babies and young children

  • At the roadside, be wary of pushing your pram or buggy onto the road while you wait for traffic to pass. Instead, position it beside you on the pavement until it’s clear to cross.
  • Hold a young child’s hand or use reins to keep them safe.
  • Don’t let young children out alone.
  • Children copy adults’ behaviour. So lead by example.
  • Walk between your child and passing traffic.
  • Children love bright clothes. Fluorescent and reflective clothing allows them to be seen by road users.

Walk to School Week

It’s good for young people to walk to and from school. So encourage them to make it part of their daily routine.

Related resources

Document

07 October 2010

Section 3 – Safer Route Planning

Roadways Section 3 – Safer Route Planning explores how to maintain road safety, exploring different elements such as safer crossing places, modes of transport, journey planning and hazards in the road environment.