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The Maitland Mercury - Friday 15 May, 2009

Stepping out to promote safety

Stepping out to promote safety

15/05/2009 8:44:00 AM
School shoes will become walking shoes for a group of Maitland Public School students on Friday, as they join their counterparts from across Australia in Walk Safely to School Day.

Keiran and Liam Walsh, Tomas Marshall and Patrick and Claire Sams will walk from Lorn to their school, ably supervised by Maitland City Council road safety officer and mum Alison Marshall.

She said the Pedestrian Council of Australia initiative – in its 10th year – aimed to promote road safety, health, public transport and the environment by encouraging all primary school-aged children to walk and commute safely to school.

But her focus was on creating good pedestrians.

She said children aged up to eight years should hold an adult’s hand in the road environment, and those aged up to 10 should be supervised by an adult.

“People place a lot of faith in white lines painted on the road,” Ms Marshall said.

“It is the responsibility of the pedestrian to stop, look and think.

“Parents need to take responsibility to set an example of good pedestrian behaviour.”

Other benefits of Walk To School Day are to reduce car dependency habits, promote public transport, reduce air pollution created by motor vehicles and reduce traffic congestion.

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