Stranger Danger and Transportation

I came across an interesting blog post from a family trying to live car-free for a year.

One of the interesting aspects is getting the kids to various places. This launches into the topic of “stranger danger”, the fear that someone is going to abduct our kids. Certainly I know that when our kids were younger, they did not have the same range of self-mobility that I had when I was their age (lo those many years ago). Yet the statistics on abduction by a stranger show that the real risk is much lower than many other risks we accept regularly.

I wonder how much of our congestion is due to parents driving kids on trips that they could really make themselves on foot, by bike or on transit? The consequences in terms of childhood obesity and other health issues are very real as well.

I wonder if this is going to change with technology (or with peak oil)? As the post mentions, there are a range of new technologies coming online that will let you track your child’s location via GPS (including implantable devices!). Will this put parents’ minds at rest and let kids take more trips under their own steam? I want to be hopeful about this…

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