Sheriff Prentis Benston of Bladen County offers some safety tips for those youngsters who will be walking back and forth to school this year.
“Parents can teach their children the following safety tips which will inform the youngsters of the danger signs to watch for and avoid when walking between school and home,” Benston said.
“Drivers should be cautious of children walking back and forth to school,” added the sheriff. “We can all learn from the safety tips below and abide by them to make Bladen County safer for all.”
— While walking, remember to always travel with a friend. Two heads are better than one, especially if there’s an emergency.
— A stranger is anyone you or your parents don’t know well.
— You or your friend must never take candy, money, medicine or anything else from a stranger.
— If a stranger in a car asks you questions, don’t get close to the car (you could get pulled in) – and never get in the car.
— Strangers can be very tricky – they can ask you to walk with them to “show” them something; they can offer to pay for your video game, or ask you to help them find a lost dog or cat. Don’t be fooled!
— Don’t tell anyone your name or address when you’re walking and don’t think that because someone knows your name that they know you – they may just be looking at your name printed on your lunch box, school bag or T-shirt.
— If you think you’re in any danger, yell, and run to the nearest store or “safe house” or back to school.
— Always tell your parents or teacher if a stranger has approached you.
“By taking the time to carefully prepare your child on how to handle these situations, you can insure your child’s safety whether they are on their way to school or home, playing on a playground or riding their bikes,” Benston concludes.