Jump to:  A   |   B   |   C   |   D   |   E   |   F   |   G   |   H   |   I   |   J   |   K   |   L   |   M   |   N   |   O   |   P   |   Q   |   R   |   S   |   T   |   U   |   V   |   W   |   X   |   Y

At What Age Can Kids Safely Cross the Street?

At What Age Can Kids Safely Cross the Street?

FRIDAY, April 21, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- Crossing a busy street requires calculations too complex for kids younger than 14, a new study finds.

In simulated experiments, University of Iowa researchers found children lack the perceptual judgment and physical skills needed to consistently get across safely.

"Some people think younger children may be able to perform like adults when crossing the street," said study corresponding author Jodie Plumert, a professor of psychological and brain sciences.

"Our study shows that's not necessarily the case on busy roads where traffic doesn't stop," Plumert said in a university news release.

In 2014, there were 8,000 injuries and 207 deaths involving motor vehicles and pedestrians aged 14 and younger in the United States, according to the National Center for Statistics and Analysis.

For this new study, researchers used a realistic simulated setting to assess the ability of children ages 6, 8, 10, 12 and 14 years to cross one lane of a busy road.

The younger children consistently had difficulty crossing the street safely, with accident rates as high as 8 percent among 6-year-olds. Even 10-year-olds were struck 5 percent of the time, and 12-year-olds, 2 percent of the time, the findings showed.

Only the 14-year-olds consistently crossed the street safely, according to the study authors.

Parents need to recognize that young children may have difficulty identifying gaps in traffic that are large enough to cross safely. Children also may not yet have the fine motor skills to step into the street the moment a car has passed, the researchers said.

And, if you're a child, eagerness can override reason when judging the best moment to cross a busy street.

"They get the pressure of not wanting to wait combined with these less-mature abilities," Plumert said. "And that's what makes it a risky situation."

Teach your children to be patient and encourage them to choose traffic gaps that are even larger than the gaps adults would choose for themselves, the researchers suggested.

City planners should pinpoint places where children are likely to cross streets and make sure those intersections have a pedestrian-crossing aid, the researchers added.

"If there are places where kids are highly likely to cross the road, because it's the most efficient route to school, for example, and traffic doesn't stop there, it would be wise to have crosswalks," Plumert said.

The study results were published April 20 in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance.

More information

Safe Kids Worldwide has more on pedestrian safety.

SOURCE: University of Iowa, news release, April 20, 2017

Reviewed Date: --

Find a pediatrician
Health Tips
Abuse of Prescription ADHD Medicines Rising on College Campuses
Guidelines for Raising Smoke-Free Kids
Helping Kids Get Over their Fears
How Old Is "Old Enough" for Contacts?
Is It Time for Toilet Training?
Parenting Déjà vu: Raising Your Grandchildren
Parents-to-Be Must Communicate
Reading to Kids Helps Their Development
Sports and Music: Both Good for Kids
Talk With Your Kids About These Issues
Talking About Sex with Your Teen
Weight Room No Longer Off-Limits to Kids
Quizzes
Child Development Quiz
Diseases & Conditions
Anatomy of a Child's Brain
Anatomy of the Endocrine System in Children
Anxiety Disorders in Children
Asthma in Children Index
Becker Muscular Dystrophy (BMD) in Children
Bone Marrow Transplant for Children
Brain Tumors in Children
Chemotherapy for Children: Side Effects
Discipline
Ewing Sarcoma in Children
Firearms
Hepatitis B (HBV) in Children
Inflammatory and Infectious Musculoskeletal Disorders
Inflammatory and Infectious Neurological Disorders
Inguinal Hernia in Children
Insect Bites and Children
Kidney Transplantation in Children
Meningitis in Children
Mood Disorders in Children and Adolescents
Myasthenia Gravis (MG) in Children
Normal Newborn Behaviors and Activities
Osteosarcoma (Osteogenic Sarcoma) in Children
Pediatric Blood Disorders
Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in Children
Preparing the School-Aged Child for Surgery
Schizophrenia in Children
School-Aged Child Nutrition
Sports Safety for Children
Superficial Injuries Overview
Television and Children
Thalassemia
The Growing Child: 1 to 3 Months
The Growing Child: 10 to 12 Months
The Growing Child: 2-Year-Olds
The Growing Child: 4 to 6 Months
The Growing Child: 7 to 9 Months
The Growing Child: Newborn
The Growing Child: Preschool (4 to 5 Years)
The Growing Child: School-Age (6 to 12 Years)
The Heart
The Kidneys
Your Child's Asthma
Your Child's Asthma: Flare-ups

Disclaimer: This information is not intended to substitute or replace the professional medical advice you receive from your child's physician. The content provided on this page is for informational purposes only, and was not designed to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease. Please consult your child's physician with any questions or concerns you may have regarding a medical condition.