British parents go to extreme lengths to ensure their children obey traffic rules as modern devices and electric vehicles increase the risk to pedestrians.
A study of 1,200 mothers and fathers with children aged six to 17 found that the majority of parents make an effort to teach their children good traffic awareness.
It comes as experts are warning parents to ensure their children know road safety rules to “stop needless tragedies before they happen”.
The ZenAuto study, supported by road safety organization Brake, found that more than eight in ten parents are concerned about modern road safety issues.
These included their children not hearing electric vehicles, wearing headphones at the side of the road and using gadgets while walking.
Meanwhile, 28 percent of parents fear their children are violating traffic rules overall.
A quarter of parents had secretly followed their child to school, and just under a third admitted they even hid behind lampposts to make sure their child was safe.
About 40 percent of children between the ages of nine and 11 told researchers they were less alert around their friends, and about a third said they didn’t always check left and right before crossing.
Some children interviewed also admitted to crossing the street without checking first and running away from an approaching car hoping they would make it.
The research also revealed gaps in children’s knowledge of electric vehicles – registrations of which have skyrocketed in the UK, with a 92 per cent increase in 2021 compared to 2020.
More than a quarter of the children did not know that electric vehicles are quieter and quicker to accelerate than traditional fuel vehicles.
ZenAuto has developed a new set of road safety guidelines to educate children and, in turn, to give parents more confidence.
Spokesperson Gemma Baco said the updated Green Car Cross Code would “provide parents and children with additional guidance to help them be more alert when crossing the road in the modern world”.
“Our own data has shown that electric vehicles have accounted for an average of 43 percent of all orders over the last three months,” Ms. Baco said.
At the forefront of the Green Car Cross Code campaign is TV presenter Konnie Huq, who said it’s important for children to be “attuned” to modern road safety hazards.
“Just because they don’t hear a car doesn’t mean there isn’t one around,” Ms. Huq said.
To learn more about the Green Car Cross Code and put your road safety knowledge to the test, click here.
Mary Williams, OBE, Chief Executive at Brake said: “Traffic accidents are devastating events for families, friends and communities and we see this firsthand through our work to support families affected by road deaths and injuries.
“By engaging children and youth on important road safety issues and helping them voice the need for safe and healthy journeys, we can make our communities safer, help people lead active lifestyles and prevent unnecessary tragedy before it happens .”