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Children are particularly vulnerable. Each year, more than 700 children under the age of 15 are killed on European roads and 100 000 are injured.
Seat belts and child restraints
Under EU law, seat belts must be used in all vehicles. Children over 1.35 m can use an adult seat belt. Those under 1.35 m must use equipment appropriate to their size and weight when travelling in cars or lorries. It is now against the law to use a rear-facing child seat on the front passenger seat – unless the airbag has been deactivated.
The CHILD project looks into the ways children are injured in accidents. Its findings should help to improve the design of child restraints.
Children as cyclists and pedestrians
Teachers and parents can teach children about road safety as pedestrians (learning by doing). But children should have some formal training on basic traffic rules before they're allowed to cycle on the road. Like adults, children should wear a helmet at all times when cycling.
The results of the ROSE 25 project include a booklet with European guidelines on road safety education for young people. The guidelines are based on the experiences of 25 EU countries.