Watch Out, Kids About these holidays

It’s holiday time, so slow down, kids around!

 

LITTLE Blue Dinosaur Foundation and MidCoast Council will join forces again this holiday season to reduce child pedestrian injuries and fatalities across the region.

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Motorists will begin to see the ‘Holiday Time; Slow Down, Kids Around’ signage around the beaches, parks and other busy recreational locations, urging people to slow down and take extra care on local roads during the holiday period.

MidCoast Council Mayor David West said school holiday periods created a surge in the number of children using local roads and paths.

“The message ‘Holiday Time; Slow Down, Kids Around’ is a highly visible and timely reminder about the importance of road safety, for both residents and visitors to be more aware of the increase in pedestrian activity in our area,” Mayor West said.

“With more kids around it’s really important for all motorists to stay aware and vigilant on the road. Kids can react impulsively and forget about road safety.

“That is why the Holiday Time campaign is so important.

“It puts the onus on drivers, parents and carers to recognise the potential danger in busy holiday spots and take extra precautions to ensure our kids are kept safe.”

Michelle and David McLaughlin founded Little Blue Dinosaur Foundation after tragically losing their son Tom in a pedestrian accident.

They now devote their time to ensuring other families don’t go through what they have and channel their energy into making school holidays safer for children.

“Tragically, Bureau of Infrastructure and Transport Research Economics data reveals that since January 2014 till August 2020, 391 children, including Tom, have lost their lives to road trauma. “Further, The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare indicates that the most common cause of death of children aged 1-14 years is road trauma,” Michelle explained.

“Holiday destinations will be even busier this year due to COVID-19 travel restrictions.

“For children and their families, these new environments are most often unfamiliar with key visual roadway differences, including lack of kerbs/guttering, no line markings or footpaths,” Michelle said.

“We lost our precious son, Tom in the blink of an eye.

“We don’t want this to happen to anyone else. The cost is just too high. That’s why the ‘Holiday Time, Slow Down Kids Around’ message is so important,” Michelle added.

Michelle said Little Blue Dinosaur was excited to be working with MidCoast Council again in 2020, with the campaign now supported by 65 councils across four States in Australia.

Michelle has also written a book around Child Pedestrian Road Safety called ‘Tom’s Holiday’.

It’s a colourful book that’s been written and designed for children, parents and their carers to provide detailed lifesaving road safety tips and education particularly around busy holiday periods.

For more information about the Hold My Hand Campaign or ‘Tom’s Holiday’ visit the Little Blue Dinosaur Foundation.

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