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Child Safety: Non-traffic Related Vehicle Incidents

These are the car accidents we don’t think about. Non-traffic related vehicle incidents are incidents that occur in places other than a public highway, street, or road. These incidents occur in driveways, parking lots, or off-road locations and may involve bicyclists, pedestrians, non-moving vehicles, or vehicles backing up.

Vehicles are often in close proximity to children’s play areas. Children can be injured or killed in “backover” or “frontover” incidents. Parents, grandparents, caregivers and drivers should all do their part to make sure that children do not share space with vehicles. A quick walk around the car before you get in could save the life of a child.

Each year, hundreds of child fatalities occur due to non-traffic related vehicle incidents. Additionally, over a hundred thousand children are injured in such accidents annually.

Tips for Avoiding Backover and Frontover Incidents:

  • Walk all around your parked vehicle to check for children, or those things that could attract a child such as a pet or toys. Also check under or behind your vehicle prior to getting in and starting the engine.
  • Physically accompany small children when they get in or out of a vehicle.
  • Identify and utilize safe play areas for children – away from parked or moving cars. Block driveways to prevent vehicles entering and exiting.
  • Designate a safe waiting spot for children to wait when nearby vehicles are about to move. This should be a spot in which a driver can clearly see them.
  • Firmly hold the hand of a child when in the presence of moving vehicles, and also in driveways, parking lots, and sidewalks.

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