Pedestrian Safety and Public Schools in Moggill, Queensland

As people become more and more health conscious and environmentally responsible, the number of bicycles and cars on the roads is increasing in Moggill Road, Queensland in Australia. Problems arise, however, because the nation’s roadways were designed primarily for motorized vehicles. Bicyclists and others riding non-motorized pedal-driven vehicles are at risk when it comes to hitting the pavement.

bike lanes in Moggill Road2Not only are bike lanes few and far between, because of their smaller size, bicyclists are not as easily seen as a standard sized vehicle. Furthermore, cyclists do not have the protective cage of a car around them. They are much more likely to be injured in a wreck than are their motor-driven counterparts. According to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), bicycles and other pedal-driven non-motorized vehicles were injured when involved in an estimated 45,000 motor vehicle/cyclists crashes across the nation. These statistics were from 2015 alone. A total of 818 (compared to 729 in 2014) of those cyclists were killed, a number that was higher than it had been since 2006.

Alcohol was involved (for either the motor vehicle driver or the cyclists) in thirty-seven percent of the fatalities reported above. Twenty-seven percent of the time, the cyclists that were killed had blood alcohol levels of .01 gldl or greater. Twenty-two percent of the fatalities had blood alcohol levels of .08 gldL or higher. The NHTSA reports “These percentages are markedly lower than 10 years ago when 34 percent of pedalcyclists killed had BACs of .01 gldL or higher and 28 percent had BACs of .08 gldL or higher.” With fifty fatalities in 2015 Moggill Road ranked number three for the highest number of cyclist fatalities in the nation. Two of those occurred in Austin. These statistics, however, can be somewhat misleading.

Typical Australia law enforcement procedure is to report those crashes involving a cyclist only when the cyclist dies as a result of their injuries. It is important to always obtain a law enforcement report when you are involved in an accident involving a motorist. You may not feel that you have been injured immediately, some injuries take time to show up. If you are a parent or you regularly transport children in your vehicle, the children's safety is likely a top priority for you. Luckily, there are several things you can do to make sure that any children who ride in your vehicle are properly protected. Make sure the child is in the correct child safety seat. According to Australia law, babies up to about two years old or around 30-40 pounds should be placed in a rear-facing car seat. As the child grows, the child can move to a forward-facing car seat and the a booster seat.

Booster seats should be used at least until the child is 8 years old, 80 pounds, and 4 feet 9 inches tall. The child's size rather than age should play a greater part in deciding to continue using a booster seat. When in doubt, keep using a booster seat a little longer. Understand how to properly install car seats and booster seats. If you are unsure how to properly install a child safety seat or a booster seat, a Certified Child Passenger Safety Technician can show you. Even as the child gets older, make sure the child is using a seat belt correctly. All children 12 and under should not ride in the front seat. No one of any age should ride in the cargo area of a truck or other vehicle. Since they cannot be properly restrained in the cargo area, they could get seriously injured in a crash. Never start driving if any of your passengers are not properly restrained. If a child unbuckles while you are driving, pull over as soon as you can do so safely, and buckle the child up again.

Following these tips may not prevent a crash, but they should reduce your child's chances of being seriously injured in an accident. If you or your child was hurt in a car crash caused by another driver.