Children Street Crossing: Beware (05-02-17)

A press release from the University of Iowa indicates it is important to provide street crossing aids, such as lights that signal pedestrians when it is safe to cross, at locations where children under 14 are likely to need to move from one side of a street to the other.  Researchers determined that “children under certain ages lack the perceptual judgment and motor skills to cross a busy road consistently without putting themselves in danger.”  In a realistic simulated environment “Children up to their early teenage years had difficulty consistently crossing the street safely, with accident rates as high as 8 percent with 6-year-olds.  Only by age 14 did children navigate street crossings without incident.” More details: “6-year-olds were struck by vehicles 8 percent of the time [during the simulation study]; 8-year-olds were struck 6 percent; 10 year-year-olds were struck 5 percent; and 12-year-olds were struck 2 percent.  Those age 14 and older had no accidents.”  In the simulated environment, moving vehicles traveled at 25 miles per hour.

“Why Children Struggle to Cross Busy Streets Safely.”  2017.  Press release, The University of Iowa,