FedEx, Safe Kids Team Up to Launch “Walk This Way” In Zhongshan


ZHONGSHAN, April 2, 2009—FedEx Express (FedEx), a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX) and one of the world’s largest express transportation companies, today joined hands with Safe Kids Worldwide, a global non-profit organization, to launch the Safe Kids Walk This Way program in Zhongshan at Shiqi Central Primary School.

Following its successful launch in major Chinese cities, including Shanghai , Beijing and Guangzhou , it marks the first initiative of its kind in Zhongshan. More than 400 students and nearly 20 FedEx volunteers, alongside officials from the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (China CDC), participated in the event.

FedEx and Safe Kids first created the Walk This Way program in the United States in 1999 with the aim of promoting child pedestrian safety. Since being introduced to China in April 2004, the program has been conducted in more than 2,000 schools and more than 1.4 million students and parents in China have received pedestrian safety education.

At the launch event, students from Shiqi Central Primary School and FedEx volunteers called for further improvements in road safety and measures to ensure a safer school zone. To help meet these goals, Safe Kids and FedEx co-donated Walk This Way road safety curriculum to 100 Zhongshan local primary schools.

Following the launch event, FedEx volunteers played road safety games with the students and practiced safe walking exercises, arming students with basic pedestrian behavior and road safety knowledge.

According to a report released by Safe Kids Worldwide, road accidents have become the second-largest killer of children aged 14 and under in China. An average of more than 30,000 children are injured or killed in traffic accidents every year. Of these, nearly 44 percent are child pedestrians. The report suggests that careless road crossing is the largest cause of road injury. Consequently, enhancing child pedestrian safety education and raising awareness of road safety is urgently needed.

With the rapid expansion of Zhongshan’s economy and city scale, an increasing number of vehicles have led to a worsening traffic situation in the city. The transportation facilities and urban traffic network need to be improved. The public awareness of road safety is still low.

A study by Safe Kids surveying more than 400 students in Zhongshan Shiqi Central Primary School indicates several key pedestrian risks in the city:

· Most students walk to school every day and spend 5-15 minutes on the road.

· Nearly half the students claimed the crossroads is the most dangerous area for walking.

· More than one third of the students noted there are no traffic lights at the crossroads.

· More than 70 percent of the students cannot recognize traffic signs.

· Twenty percent of the students believe it is “safe” to cross the street anywhere if there is no vehicle on the road.

The study clearly identifies the key areas needed for road safety education. In addition, the study points out that efforts should be made to improve the safety of road environments while also educating vehicle drivers and students about road safety.