8 in 10 parents worry about road safety – including quiet EVs

A study of 1,200 mums and dads and their kids aged six to 17 found 37 per cent think their children are less sensible when out and about with friends and 28 per cent worry they ignore road safety rules altogether.

Watching TikTok videos, playing games on their mobile phone and making videos on social media are also said to distract children when near or crossing a road.

As a result, 55 per cent of parents are doing everything they can to instil good road awareness in their children.

Updated road safety guidelines for youngsters

This includes walking local routes with them to build familiarity (38 per cent), talking about road safety during walks (37 per cent) and getting them to watch road safety videos online (29 per cent).

Others warn their children not to listen to music when they’re out and about (40 per cent), make them wear bright clothing (30 per cent) and vet who they walk with (26 per cent).

But 32 per cent have even hidden behind lampposts to make sure their youngster was looking left and right and 26 per cent have secretly followed them to school.

To raise awareness of pedestrian road safety in the wake of the growing number of electric vehicles on Britain’s roads, an updated set of road safety guidelines for kids has been unveiled by TV presenter Konnie Huq.

ZenAuto, which commissioned the research and also created a road safety quiz where users can test their knowledge, is supported by road safety charity Brake.

The newly developed ‘Green Car Cross Code’ aims to upskill children and in turn make parents feel more confident.

Knowledge on EV vehicles will decrease risks

Says Konnie Huq: “Electric vehicles and alternative fuel vehicles are great for the planet and for reducing pollution in our towns and cities.

“But they are typically quieter and can accelerate quicker – which is why it’s important that kids are tuned into modern road safety dangers.

“Just because they can’t hear a car doesn’t mean there isn’t one nearby.”

Last year saw the biggest annual increase in the number of electric cars registered in the UK, with more than 395,000 battery-electric cars logged – a growth of 92 per cent on 2020.

But the study found 27 per cent of children don’t realise electric vehicles are quieter than traditional fuel vehicles.

And 30 per cent didn’t think an electric car can go faster more quickly compared to a petrol or diesel car.

It also emerged only 68 per cent of children aged between nine and 11 always look left and right before crossing, and 43 per cent admit they pay less attention when around their friends.

To find out more about the Green Car Cross Code and to put your road safety knowledge to the test, visit here.

Chris Price