A BEREAVED family and a road accident survivor today launched a campaign organised by a Huddersfield-based road safety charity.
The family of Kyle McDermott and accident casualty Sandie Large appealed for motorists to slow down at the Yorkshire launch of Road Safety Week, organised by Brake.
Seven-year-old Kyle died in a hit-and-run in Mexborough, north of Rotherham, last year.
Sandie, 18, from Leeds, was badly injured in a road accident in 2003.
Brake says two-thirds of children in Yorkshire say drivers should slow down near their homes and schools.
At the launch event at Pudsey Waterloo Primary School in Leeds six children – representing the six children killed or seriously hurt every week – appealed for 20mph around schools and homes.
A child hit at 20mph will almost certainly survive.
At 40mph a child will almost certainly die.
Brake is calling on the Government to install 20mph zones around schools and homes.
A Brake survey of 1,146 children in Yorkshire found almost half had been hit or nearly hit by a vehicle while walking.
The report found that 63% of children thought the roads near their schools were dangerous. Brake general manager Sarah Fatica said: “It’s disgraceful that our children are being killed and injured in such horrifying numbers while walking and cycling.
“It’s high time we put the safety of our children first.
“We need the Government to invest in measures such as 20mph zones that make our communities safer and more family-friendly.
“Our children should not be living in fear of fast traffic and being prevented from getting out and about.
“We’re also calling on the region’s drivers to take responsibility for protecting children and making roads safer.”
Kyle’s grandma, Catherine McDermott, said: “Kyle’s whole family struggles to accept he is gone.
“We are 100% behind Road Safety Week and Brake’s demand for the Government to require councils to install 20mph zones around schools and homes.”
Sandie said: “I am lucky to be alive. I am supporting Road Safety Week and asking drivers across Yorkshire to always slow down to 20mph or lower near schools and homes.
“Please don’t put kids in danger just because you’re in a rush.”
To report dangerous roads call the Brake hotline on 08000 68 77 80.