As we prepare for another school year to begin, it is imperative that we all remember the importance of our children's safety. From walking or biking to school to navigating busy roads, our children face many potential hazards on their daily commute. As the Executive Director of the Broward Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), I urge parents to be vigilant about their children's safety. There are many simple, yet effective strategies parents can utilize to keep their children safe. Encouraging kids to wear helmets and brightly colored clothing while biking or walking can greatly improve their visibility to drivers. Additionally, teaching kids how to safely cross the street by utilizing crosswalks and looking both ways before crossing can prevent accidents.
One major issue that has been prevalent in recent years is the use of electronic devices while walking or biking. Distracted walking and biking have been proven to increase the likelihood of accidents and can lead to serious injuries. Parents must educate their children about the importance of staying focused while commuting and consider implementing rules about when electronic devices can be used. Finally, it is crucial for parents to take an active role in their community's transportation infrastructure. Parents should be aware of road construction or closures and plan alternate routes if necessary. They should also advocate for the improvement of sidewalks and bike lanes in their communities to ensure safe travel for their children. The safety of our children should always be our top priority. As we head back to school in late August, I encourage all parents to take the necessary precautions to ensure their children's safe commute. Let us work together as a community to keep our children safe and sound.