WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the creators of the animated series “Chuggington” have partnered to teach children how to be safe in and around school buses and cars.
The nationwide traffic safety campaign is geared toward children from the ages of 2 to 7 and includes a public service announcement featuring characters from the show, a kid-focused safety pledge and downloadable tips and activities for parents and caregivers to use with children.
"This exciting partnership with ‘Chuggington’ will help us bring our traffic safety message to young children and parents alike," U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said. "Educating children at an early age about the importance of wearing bicycle helmets, looking both ways when crossing the street and buckling up leads to a lifetime of good traffic safety habits."
The new partnership combines NHTSA's safety guidelines for pedestrians, school buses, bikes and car seat use with ‘Chuggington’ characters to reach parents and children.
The school bus safety tips are broken down into three categories: boarding the bus, riding the bus and disembarking. Among the tips for getting on the bus are wait “five giant steps” away from the road and wait until the school bus driver says it is safe to get on. Once on the bus, kids should go straight to their seats and sit facing the front of the school bus. In terms of getting off the bus, recommendations include looking for cars before disembarking and waiting for the driver to signal that it’s safe to cross the street.
"‘Chuggington’'s characters learn important life lessons in every episode of the show and often earn badges as rewards for appropriate behavior," said Dick Rothkopf, chairman of Ludorum, the creators of the show. "The 'Think Safe, Ride Safe, Be Safe!' traffic safety pledge and badge is based on this concept. We hope that children will be excited to learn the rules of the road while they interact with ‘Chuggington’'s characters and earn their ‘official' ‘Chuggington’ traffic safety badges."
To access the “Chuggington” kids pledge and online tools, visit www.chuggington.com/safety. To visit the “Chuggington” page on NHTSA’s website, go here.