Burnley fifth in Lancashire for children hurt and killed on roads

One of the Let's Look Out For Each Other signs at the entrance to Middlesex Avenue in Burnley
One of the Let's Look Out For Each Other signs at the entrance to Middlesex Avenue in Burnley

Burnley ranks as the fifth highest place in Lancashire for children being killed or seriously injured on the road.

Thirty children were involved in road accidents in the town between 2012 and 2016.

Blackburn with Darwen came top of table with 57 followed by Preston with 35 and in third place was Blackpool with 33. Pendle was the fourth highest place with 31 children injured.

The shock statistics have prompted a high profile campaign across the town, spearheaded by the Lancashire County Council’s Road Safety Partnership, to slash these figures and help keep youngsters safe on the roads.

Eye catching signs with the slogan “Let’s Look Out For Each Other” have been placed at more than 60 different busy roads and streets across Burnley to encourage pedestrians and drivers to be aware of each other.

Every week, on average 12 children under 15 years old are injured or killed on the roads in Lancashire, Blackburn and Blackpool and 68% of child casualties seriously injured or killed in this age group were pedestrians.

Figures also show that a significant number of young child pedestrian casualties were with an adult at the time they were killed or injured.

The most common cause of children being killed or seriously injured on the roads in this area is a child stepping or running into the road suddenly into the path of a vehicle as research has shown that young children are not able to judge how fast vehicles are going or how far away they are.

Children aged 11 to 12 are particularly vulnerable as pedestrians when they move to secondary school and start travelling independently.

Two years ago the community of Burnley was thrown into shock when teenager Luke Mason (13) was seriously injured after he was knocked down by a car just yards from his home in Lyndhurst Road. Luke, who had gone to the shop on an errand, was airlifted to Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool.

The “Let’s Look Out For Each Other’ signs have been posted in Todmorden Road, close to where the accident happened.

Leaflets promoting the campaign have gone out to schools, nurseries and other establishments across the borough and parents and carers are also being asked to be aware of the risks children face on the road.

There are also a host of road safety tips and rules to follow to keep safe on the road for the different age groups.

A spokesman for the campaign said: “Even from a young age it’s essential to set a good example of how to behave.

“Your child will be learning about road safety at school but as a parent or carer you play an even bigger part in helping your child to learn how to stay safe.

“Children will copy adults’ behaviour, so if they see you taking risks they will probably take risks too.”

Schools are also playing their part in the drive to make children safer with a series of courses including a practical pedestrian course which uses theory and practical sessions to show youngsters how to be stay safe on the roads.