Officials urge kids to pay attention, practice crosswalk safety

WORTHINGTON, Ohio (WCMH)– As the new school year begins, crossing guards and medical professionals are urging students to be vigilant as they walk to school.

“Just be diligent, pay attention and don’t be distracted,” said Vera Woody, a crossing guard for the Worthington City School District. “Do not step down off the curb unless I’m all the way in the middle of the crossing.”

According to Safe Kids Worldwide, an organization dedicated to protecting children from unintentional injuries, pedestrian accidents are the fifth leading cause of injury related deaths for children and teens between the ages of five and 19-years-old, nationwide.

The organization also states teens are at the greatest risk.

“This is the time of year when kids are outside playing, kids are going to school and we see a lot of pedestrian types of injuries,” said Dr. Sarah Denny, an emergency room pediatrician at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. “We see just the little bumps, bruises and scratches, all the way up to fatalities.”

Denny urges children to stay on the sidewalk and cross the street with a grownup leading the way, while also making sure distractions such as cell phones are put away.

“No one wants to see a child get hurt,” she said. “We want to make sure everyone gets to school safely this fall.”

Additionally, Safe Kids Worldwide has tips for parents and children which can be found here.

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