'Walk to School' Day Teaches Students Lesson in Safety - 8 News NOW

'Walk to School' Day Teaches Students Lesson in Safety

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Students walk to school to learn lesson in safety. Students walk to school to learn lesson in safety.

LAS VEGAS -- Thousands of Clark County students received a lesson in pedestrian safety Wednesday morning during the international "Walk to School" day.

The walk to school is important for school-age children as school zones are especially dangerous areas for pedestrians, said Jeanne Cosgrove, director of Safe Kids Clark County.

Cosgrove said by students walking or biking to school, they are healthier and more alert when they get to class. But doing so safely is another story and something both children and adults have to take responsibility for on the roads.

Students from 10 schools in Clark County participated in the walk day, ditching their parents' cars and getting to class on foot.

Along the way, volunteers gave students lessons on traffic safety that even the youngest students are quickly learning.

"She teaches me to look both ways, even look twice, because if you don't see one (car) you can get hurt," 5-year-old Noah King said.

In 2011 almost 140 kids under age 17 in Clark County were injured in auto-pedestrian collisions. Four children were killed, including 6-year-old Mia Decker, who was hit while crossing a street on a crosswalk, just blocks from her school.

"It scares me,," said Mark Waffle, the father a 5-year-old student. "I don't know if I would let my child walk to school on her own, anyway, in this day and age."

Cosgrove said more kids should walk to school, but they need to pay attention to drivers, many of them parents who are breaking traffic laws.

"If you have less cars dropping kids off, then we have less potential for pedestrian injuries," she said. "The more children walk -- and walk safely -- the better for traffic control around schools."

Cosgrove said many drivers are distracted, many of whom are on their cell phones, speeding or not paying attention to what is going on the road around them.

"We are finding so many parents double-parking, parking across the street, waving for their child to come across midblock while cars are coming -- and that's so dangerous," she said. "I think people have a false sense of security around schools, thinking that everybody is going to be aware that children are around but really parents can be the worse culprits."


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