MANY YOUNG CHILDREN ARE DYING ON THE R0ADS
PRETORIA: An unacceptably high number of children are dying on South African roads due to the negligence of parents and reckless drivers.
An analysis of road fatalities statistics, show that a total of
995 children under the age of 12 died as a result of road crashes last year.
The majority (600) of those who died were boys. Girls accounted for 382 of the fatalities and the gender of the remaining 13 could not be determined.
Many of the children die as pedestrians, which indicates that parents are failing to exercise proper control over them and there is a high level of incidents of reckless and negligent driving in residential area.
The World Health Organisation
(WHO) has noted that road traffic injury is now a leading cause of injury among children and young adults. It said the use of child restraints can lead to at least 60% in deaths.
"The benefits of child restraints have been shown to greatest for younger children, particularly those under the age of four," the WHO said in its 2018 World Status on Road Safety Report.
"For children 8-12 years, booster seats have been associated with a 19% reduction in the odds of injury compared to using a seatbelt alone," the report said.
South African has legislation requiring children to be put on child restraints, however, more needs to be done to enforce the law.