National Public Health Week: Preventing accidents

National Public Health Week (April 4-10) is dedicated to spreading awareness about safety and injury prevention to make your community a safer and healthier place to live in. Protect yourself, your family and community by taking action to prevent injuries. No time is more dangerous than when you are on the move so follow these safety tips (provided by the American Public Health Association during National Public Health Week to promote awareness and prevent injury while you’re traveling.

  • Wear a helmet and reflective gear when on a bike, skateboard, scooter or other motor vehicle.
  • Avoid texting, eating, using the phone or grooming while driving.
  • Be a designated driver. Don’t drink and drive, let others drink and drive, or get into a vehicle with someone who has been drinking.
  • Avoiding driving while you are tired.
  • Wear a seat belt on every trip, no matter how short.
  • Make sure children are buckled up in a car seat, booster seat or seat belt.
  • Be mindful of the environment and be cautious when crossing the road. Use sidewalks and avoid jaywalking.
  • Walk facing traffic and make yourself visible when walking at night.
  • Discuss your rules of the road and ask your teen to pledge to avoid speeding, texting and having multiple passengers while driving.

Those tips are a great starting point towards making your trip safer but by you can promote safe behavior by doing more in your community. The American Public Health Association has some helpful pointers for people who want to continue to make their community a safer place for drivers, passengers and pedestrians. By following just one or two of these suggestions during National Public Health Week, you can make a difference!

  • Partner with law enforcement officials to offer traffic education classes for both motorists and non-motorists.
  • Support graduated driver’s license laws for new drivers.
  • Support alcohol screening and brief intervention programs in your community.
  • Encourage the PTA to work with schools to implement teen driver safety programs.
  • Hold a child safety-seat demonstration to help families ensure their safety seats are installed correctly.
  • Work with community and urban design professionals to plan for and create safe walking and cycling conditions.
  • Educate policymakers about the importance of traffic calming measures in residential and urban areas.
  • Write a letter to the editor of your local paper that stresses the importance of preventing injuries during NPHW and beyond.
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