An article in the Philadelphia Inquirer introduces some scary statistics about pediatric pedestrian injuries. It outlines the takeaways from a report released recently by Safe Kids Worldwide concerning childhood risk of pedestrian injury. The report states that teens and tweens (kids ages 10 through 19) are now the childhood age group most likely to be injured in pedestrian accidents. The risk of injury to younger children has decreased by about two-thirds, while the number of pedestrian injuries among 16 to 19-year olds increased by 25% between 2006 and 2010. The researchers attribute this change to the increase in cell phone ownership and use of other handheld electronic devices among members of the teen and tween age groups. (Some see the decreasing rate of injury within the younger age group as a sign of the success of pedestrian safety educational programs, which are usually oriented toward younger kids.)
According to the Inquirer article, these national trends are reflected in our region. Among Pennsylvania children, those in the 10 to 19 age group were “most likely to sustain an injury” in 2010. It is important for older children to be responsible about cell phone use and avoid distracted walking in order to decrease their risk of being involved in a pedestrian accident.
Philadelphia Inquirer article: “Children 10 to 19 now most likely to be hurt in pedestrian accidents”