The average weight of a car is about 3,000 pounds. The average weight of a large truck is about 60,000 pounds. The average weight of a child is about 40-50 pounds.
Now calculate the average speed of a vehicle, plus the vehicle weight, plus the laws of gravity to determine how far a child could be thrown and how much injury they could sustain if hit by a vehicle.Yellow flashing lights, fluorescent orange cones and vests seem to have no effect on the drivers of today. We see complaints filed every day with crossing guards themselves because drivers have to slow down or even stop at crosswalks to let children cross to get to and from school. Several drivers even choose to add one or more obscene gestures to their evident anger.
Children need to know the importance of crosswalks and the importance of using them. They need to know the importance of remaining on the sidewalks until the crossing guard has traffic at a complete stop. The children need to know that a crossing guard is not able to just snap their fingers and magically make the traffic come to a stop.
Even educating our children is not enough. We need to re-educate the drivers. We need to make the drivers realize that a child's safety is of the utmost importance.
It is only with your help and understanding that crossing guards and others can effectively do their jobs and help protect your children. If the facts of facing a stiff fine, higher insurance rates and possible loss of your driver's license are not enough, then think about the fact that the child's life you save by taking that extra few seconds to be safe may be your own.
Aggie Beckstead and friend
Sandy City Police crossing guard