Cleveland Fire Brigade is teaming up with Middlesbrough Council to support a global campaign.
Global Road Safety Week takes place from 4-10 May and this year the theme is keeping young people safe on the roads.
Every day more than 500 children lose their lives in traffic crashes globally which highlights the importance of the campaign according to Andrew Bright, Cleveland Fire Brigade’s Road Safety Coordinator.
“The importance of this campaign cannot be emphasised enough given that every day over 500 children are killed on the world’s roads and many thousands more are injured.
“Firefighters are often first on the scene at road traffic collisions and see firsthand the devastation and tragedy that can result from crashes on our roads.
“Children form a highly vulnerable group of road users and although our region has seen some marked reductions in casualty levels there is still more work to be done to making our roads safer and we urge everyone to ‘Look Out for Each Other’ when using the road,” said Andrew Bright.
During the week Middlesbrough Council’s Road Safety Team and Cleveland Fire Brigade will be visiting a number of local schools to get across key safety messages.
This will involve children attending seatbelt assemblies when Seatbelt Sheriff Lynn Hepworth, Middlesbrough Council’s Road Safety Officer, will demonstrate the importance of wearing a seat belt and using an appropriate child car seat.
Lynn Hepworth said: “Children will then have the opportunity to become Deputy Seatbelt Sheriff’s by taking the Seatbelt Sheriff pledge to always wear a seatbelt and also to make sure that everyone in the car is belted in securely.
“Seatbelt Sheriff is a fun and entertaining way to get across this important message to every child who will hopefully pass it on to other family members and their friends.
“Schoolchildren are also being encouraged to take ‘safies’ – a ‘selfie’ on a safe theme – and post them online as part of the campaign.”
During the week firefighters and Middlesbrough Council road safety officers will also be giving out car safety advice at Parkway Shopping Centre, Coulby Newham on Friday 8 May between 2pm and 4pm.
This will include checks on in-car baby and child seats, booster seats and booster cushions.
Meanwhile, as a pre-cursor to the campaign, firefighters from Thornaby Fire Station have visited the 1st Ingleby Barwick Scout Group to get across key safety messages.
Scout Leader Lucy Nicholson said: “Our scout group takes road safety very seriously and endeavour to provide education and information through the completion of badge work, and through reminding the children of road safety rules when we are carrying out activities.
“The children have very much enjoyed working with Cleveland Fire Brigade to learn more about Road safety.”
Six-year-old beaver Harry Nicholson commented: Road Safety is very important because children need to learn how dangerous roads can be. The visit from the Fire Brigade was exciting but it also helped the beavers, cubs and scouts remember why they were there to keep us and other children safe.”
Cub Freya Thornton, aged 9, said: “I have learnt to be safe and be seen. It was very exciting to see the fire engine.”
Thomas Parry, another cub, aged 9, added: “‘The fireman helped us learn lots of new things about road safety. We learnt about airbags injuring you if you don’t wear your seat belt. I learnt the different names for different crossings and will always remember to find a safe place to cross the road and wait for the green man at a crossing.”
For further information about Global Road Safety Week, visit www.savekidslives2015.org