AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - Officials are urging caution with some holiday gifts, as the number of backover collisions typically increase during this time.
Children and teens will be riding through neighborhoods on their new bikes, scooters, and other toys in the coming months.
And for that reason, officials are issuing a word of caution. It's a happy time of year when children are riding around on their new bikes, scooters and other toys.
But unfortunately it also comes with a startling statistic. According to "Kids and Cars," 50 children are backed over by vehicles each week...and in more than 70 percent of these incidents, a parent or close relative is behind the wheel.
"Unfortunately, every year there are these types of crashes that happen that involve a child with their new riding toy and a car so drivers have to be watchful, but parents have to play a role as well," says AAA Texas Spokesman Doug Shupe.
Drivers are reminded to check their blind spots, including the area behind your vehicle that you cannot see in any mirror. And just as important, slow down on neighborhood streets to watch for kids on bikes and other toys.
"All too often, children on very low riding toys or children on quick moving bicycles can easily be missed if we as drivers and watching the road and looking out for them," says Shupe. "And also remember, kids can get excited and they could try to dart out between parked cars on the side of the street. Be very careful with that as well."
But it's not just drivers that need to be on the lookout. If you have a child who will be out and about on their toys, you're encouraged to teach them not to play in, under or around vehicles.
"That includes using the sidewalks, not crossing in the middle of the streets, but using crosswalks, making sure that they follow the rules of the road like stopping at those stop signs. And the children need to learn to be very watchful of those vehicles."
For a complete list of tips for parents and children, visit http://www.kidsandcars.org/