TORONTO – Each year, more than 2,400 children under the age of 14 are injured as pedestrians in Canada. That’s the equivalent of about 40 busloads of kids. As children gear up to head door-to-door this Halloween, Parachute and FedEx Express Canada are urging children, parents and drivers to be extra vigilant on the roads.
For 15 years, Parachute and FedEx Express Canada have been delivering Walk This Way, a national awareness campaign to remind parents and drivers about road safety and to ensure children walk safely on Halloween, and every day, in their neighbourhoods.
“We know more than half of pedestrian fatalities occur at night or when there’s low-light conditions,” says Pina Starnino, Vice President of Operations at FedEx Express Canada. “Our drivers understand the importance of being especially alert around schools and pedestrian crossings year-round. On Halloween, we want to encourage parents and their children to be extra vigilant to ensure children get home safely at the end of the night.”
Child pedestrian incidents remain a leading cause of death among Canadian children. On average, 30 child pedestrians under the age of 14 are killed every year. Children between the ages of five and 14 are at greatest risk.
“On Halloween, there are more children on foot trick-or-treating, compared to other nights of the year. That means they may be at an increased risk for pedestrian injuries and fatalities,” says Pamela Fuselli, Interim CEO Parachute. “The days are getting shorter, which serves as a reminder for both drivers and pedestrians to be more aware of their surroundings.”
Walk This Way also stresses the importance of reminding drivers to slow down and pay attention to speeds, especially in residential areas. Parachute and FedEx Express Canada are offering these safety tips before heading out on Halloween:
- Have children wear reflective items such as glow sticks, wristbands, and tape to help them be more visible to drivers.
- Use non-toxic face paint and makeup instead of masks, which can obstruct a child’s vision.
- Always cross at crosswalks, street corners and intersections while trick-or-treating.
- Drive slowly in residential areas where children are more likely to be.
- Adults or older children should walk with young children since they may lack the skills to navigate streets on their own.
Parachute is generously funded by FedEx Express Canada to provide the Walk This Way pedestrian safety program year-round, providing education, resources and support for parents and community groups to increase the safety of their streets. – CNW