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Back to school safely: braving traffic with your children

Do you take your children to school on foot, do you let them cycle or do you think the car is the safest option in today's traffic? Attention to road safety is necessary for every mode of transport. Here are a few tips!

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Assessing traffic

To help your children move safely through traffic, it is important to stimulate their sense of traffic. Take them with you on a bike or on foot as often as you can. By watching you, they learn to assess traffic situations and react wisely.

Moreover, always obey the traffic rules and tell about them. In this way, they pick up a lot of traffic wisdom at a very young age.

The safest route ...

... is not always the shortest route. Look together with your child at the dangerous situations he/she may encounter on the way to school. Think of busy intersections, car park exits, tram tracks ...

If your daughter or son is walking or cycling alone, take the time to practise together a few times beforehand. At that time, check whether your child knows the traffic rules, has a good enough overview of the traffic situation, makes contact with motorists, can estimate the speed of cars, stays out of the blind spot of lorries, and so on.

Quietly on your way

By car, by bike, on foot or by any other means of transport: always leave well in advance. Those who are in a hurry pay less attention and are more likely to make mistakes. And that can easily be prevented!

Safely packed

Especially when the days are getting shorter again, a reflective jacket or a fluorescent jacket is invaluable to make small road users more noticeable in traffic. In addition to good working lights, of course.

Additional fluorescent stickers on the helmet or book bag also make your child much more visible. A sturdy bicycle helmet with EN 1080 label also protects them in the event of a fall.

By car to school

The beginning and end of the school day are the busiest times on the road, especially in the school environment. So be aware of the fact that you are sharing the road with many vulnerable road users. Children are less conspicuous and may make unexpected manoeuvres or react more slowly than adults. So keep to the speed limit of 30 km/h and be ready to brake when necessary. Take extra care when overtaking cyclists.

Do not park right outside the school gates, but find a quieter spot a little further away. Keep enough distance from pedestrian crossings and bus stops so that crossing pedestrians have a clear view of the road. Ideally, park the car on the street side where the school is, so that your children don't have to cross.

What in case of an accident?

Hopefully, this last tip is superfluous. But when you're out on the road, you'd better be well insured:

  • As a driver, the compulsory car insurance covers the material damage. As a cyclist, you can take out a bicycle insurance that covers damage to your steel horse.

  • Do you cause damage to someone else on a bicycle or on foot? Then your family insurance will intervene.

  • If you are injured yourself as a pedestrian or cyclist, a personal accident insurance will help you for the costs that your health and hospital insurance will not reimburse. If you have an accident with your car, your driver's insurance will come into play.

A parent who is warned is worth two. We wish your whole family a smooth and safe new school year!

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