Online program teaches students traffic safety

NORTH SHORE (HawaiiNewsNow) - Waimalu Elementary School students took to the streets Wednesday without leaving the classroom, learning important traffic and pedestrian safety habits from Safety Officer Sam.

The cartoon superhero is part of Adventures in Traffic Safety, the state's first online traffic safety program locally produced by Farmers Insurance Hawaii for Hawaii's public elementary schools.

Combining fun with a serious message, Farmers Insurance Hawaii employees joined with Honolulu Police Department District 3 Community Policing officers to help students complete the interactive quizzes and activities of Adventures in Traffic Safety, which includes age-appropriate activities for grades K-6.

Adventures in Traffic Safety was created to educate children about traffic safety to form good pedestrian and eventually good driving habits and practices.

With fun upbeat music and video game graphics, Safety Officer Sam teaches students about pedestrian safety practices, as well as vehicle passenger and bicycle safety.

The web-based safety curriculum includes modules for crossing streets safely, correct seat belt usage, bicycle safety, knowing street signs and signals, obeying posted speed limits and avoiding driving distractions.

Students will have an opportunity to be "Keiki Reporters" and are encouraged to submit traffic safety comments, issues, and questions to Safety Officer Sam.

Safety Officer Sam will respond to the students to help continue and broaden their traffic safety knowledge.

In the last three years, traffic safety has been a serious issue with 150 traffic related fatalities. Already this year, 9 people have died on Oahu streets.

"Keeping our keiki safe, especially crossing busy streets and intersections going to and from school and after-school activities, is a community-wide priority," said Michele Saito, president of Farmers Insurance Hawaii. "By reinforcing safety messages in a fun way, we can help to make our streets safer statewide. "

Keith Hui, principal of Waimalu Elementary, added that Adventures in Traffic Safety helps to reinforce traffic safety messages being communicated to students at school.

"Adventures in Traffic Safety and the Farmers Hawaii Hot Spots program sends a strong message of the importance of traffic safety, not only for our students, but also to drivers to be more aware of paying attention to students on their way to and from school and at busy crossing intersections," Hui said.

Adventures in Traffic Safety is part of the Hot Spots Traffic Safety Program, created in 2002 in response to the growing public safety concerns caused by speeders. The interactive program is available to all elementary schools statewide at

For additional information about Adventures in Traffic Safety and Farmers Insurance Hawaii traffic safety programs, contact Farmers Hawaii at 544-3988.

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