Drive like it's Halloween every night

Parachute & FedEx Express Canada urge drivers to be mindful of young pedestrians every day of the year.

TORONTO, Oct. 24, 2013 /CNW/ - Driving with extra care on Halloween is a great idea. Why not make it a habit every day? Each year, almost 2,400 children in Canada are injured in pedestrian-related incidents.  We can bring this number down by driving carefully in residential areas, avoiding distractions and keeping our speed at or below the posted limit—not just while children are trick-or-treating, but every day of the year.

FedEx Express Canada and Parachute, a national charity dedicated to preventing injury and saving lives, have tips for drivers and parents to ensure children can walk safely in their neighbourhoods year round.

"Halloween is a fantastic opportunity for parents to discuss safe pedestrian habits with their kids and to model safe behaviour both as a pedestrian and as a driver," says Pamela Fuselli, a Vice-President at Parachute. "Practice the safety rules with them and consistently set a good example - make it part of the conversation. Research shows that this really makes a difference!"

"As the world's largest express transportation company, FedEx puts safety above all, both in the workplace and in the communities in which we operate," said Lisa Lisson, president of FedEx Express Canada.  "Our drivers know the importance of being extra alert around school and pedestrian crossings, since these are the most important stops they make each day."

To help parents and children prepare for Halloween, Parachute recommends:

  • Children under age nine should be accompanied by an adult or responsible older child, since they lack the developmental skills to cross the street on their own;
  • Teach your child to stop at the curb, look left, right and left again, and to listen for oncoming traffic;
  • Select costumes with bright colours to increase your child's visibility and choose face paint instead of masks;
  • Always cross at crosswalks, street corners or intersections - it's unsafe to cross between parked cars or other obstacles;
  • Stay on the sidewalk when walking from house to house and if there is no sidewalk, walk beside the road, facing traffic so drivers can see you.

To help drivers prepare for Halloween, Parachute recommends:

  • Drive slowly in residential areas where children are more likely to be trick-or-treating;
  • Watch out for kids, many of whom will be wearing costumes that limit their vision;
  • Reduce distractions, such as cellphones or loud music, and stay alert;
  • Reduce your speed during peak trick-or-treating hours.

Another effective way to increase road safety where you live is by becoming a Pace Car community, part of Parachute's Walk This Way program. Community members sign up to become "Pace Car drivers", displaying a Pace Car emblem on their vehicle. They pledge to drive respectfully and within speed limits, becoming "mobile speed bumps" to slow traffic, especially in school zones and pedestrian-dense areas.

For more information on Halloween safety, how to become a Pace Car Community, and the Walk This Way program, visit www.parachutecanada.ca.

Parachute is generously funded by FedEx Express Canada to provide the Walk This Way pedestrian safety program year-round, providing education, resources and support for parents and community groups to increase the safety of their streets.

About Parachute
Parachute is a national, charitable organization dedicated to preventing injuries and saving lives. Parachute officially came into being in July 2012 and unites the former organizations of Safe Communities Canada, Safe Kids Canada, SMARTRISK and ThinkFirst Canada into one leader in injury prevention. Parachute's injury prevention solutions, knowledge mobilization, public policy, and social awareness efforts are designed to help Canadians reduce their risks of injury while achieving Parachute's vision of an injury-free Canada where Canadians enjoy long lives lived to the fullest. For more information, visit www.parachutecanada.org.

About FedEx Corp.
FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) provides customers and businesses worldwide with a broad portfolio of transportation, e-commerce and business services.  With annual revenues of $43 billion, the company offers integrated business applications through operating companies competing collectively and managed collaboratively, under the respected FedEx brand.  Consistently ranked among the world's most admired and trusted employers, FedEx inspires its more than 300,000 team members to remain "absolutely, positively" focused on safety, the highest ethical and professional standards and the needs of their customers and communities. For more information, visit news.fedex.com.

SOURCE: Parachute

For further information:

Kathy Blair, Coordinator, Media Relations and Communications, Parachute
Tel: 647-776-5125
Email: kblair@parachutecanada.org


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