186 300 children die each year from road traffic crashes around the world – that’s more than 500 children every day. In fact road traffic injury ranks among the top four causes of death for all children over the age of five years.
While the road safety challenge is a global one, the children most likely to die in a road traffic crash live in the world’s low- and middle-income countries, where 95% of road traffic fatalities among children occur. Rates vary across regions. Even within countries, children from economically poor backgrounds are at greatest risk.
Children of all ages are at risk of being involved in a road traffic crash. Boys account for nearly twice as many road traffic deaths as girls worldwide. This increased risk for boys is thought to be due to greater exposure to traffic, as well as a tendency for boys to take more risks than girls, especially as adolescents.