Summertime and the livin’ is easy…and the children are out
Stone Driveways of New England Summer Safety Tips
With summer upon us, the children are out of school and playing in the yards and driveways. Tragically, over 2,400 driveway accidents involving young children happen each year in the United States. We would like to offer you tips to help avoid unnecessary tragedy.
Set the rules with your children
As with any safety issue (firearms in the house, swimming pools, stairways, household cleaners) no matter what their age, designate steadfast rules without options.
D – Direct children to the grass. Consider it the “your feet are touching the grass” rule. Tell children when they see a car approaching or moving in the driveway that their feet have to meet the yard.
R – Reverse slowly. Teach your children to watch for the white rear lights that illuminate when a car is in reverse and to never stand behind a vehicle when it is running.
I – Ignore distractions. Before entering your driveway, roll down the windows and turn off the radio and hang up the phone. Radios and cell phones are a distraction and cause the driver not to hear a child coming to welcome them home. If you are able to hear someone yell or scream, you could save a life.
V – Verify the location of all children before you leave and when you arrive. Take a head-count with the understanding that other children may be playing in the area that you may not be aware of.
E – Engine off rule. Children should understand that they need to wait until the engine is off before approaching a vehicle no matter where they are. If children are in close to your vehicle, you won’t be able to see them. They may think it would be a fun game to “hide” from you by sneaking up and covering themselves from sight at either the front or back of your car. Talk to them about this dangerous version of “hide and seek”.
Don’t let your summer fun turn into tragedy. With a few safety rules, driveways can be part of the playground as well as your path home.