Road Safety as Seen and Drawn by Grade Schoolers

Children artists weigh in with visual messages on ways to reduce crashes in annual contest.

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FREDERIC J. BROWN—AFP/Getty Images

Kids don't yet drive, yet they are passengers and pedestrians with a vested interest in safety on U.S. roads. And, some of the artists among the grade-school set have a few visual things to say on the topic. 

Second-grader Avni Choudepally of Morrisville, North Carolina, and fourth-grader Lynn Sun of Livingston, New Jersey, won top honors in the 2017 Road Safety Student Art Contest, federal transportation officials said Wednesday in a news release.

Open to all students in kindergarten through sixth grade, the latest contest expanded on the prior year's message of the importance of wearing a safety belt to the importance of passenger vehicle drivers, bicyclists, pedestrians, and commercial drivers sharing the road.

For the imaginative fourth-grader Lynn Sun, that meant drawing a fire hydrant with a face letting a young girl riding a bicycle and others nearby know to watch out for a yellow truck already in the intersection. 

Lynn Sun

“All of the students who participated in this year’s contest are frequent passengers in vehicles or pedestrians themselves, so now is the perfect time to engage them in the importance of road safety,” said Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Deputy Administrator Cathy Gautreaux. 

The entry drawn by Avni Choudepally, the second-grader in North Carolina, showed a street scene featuring a yellow school bus filled with kids, including two getting off at a busy bus stop.

Avni Choudepally

Finalist Bruce Rui Elvin, a second grader in New Canaan, Connecticut, drew a superhero to relay his message not to text while driving.

Bruce Rui Elvin

Entries from 12 students will be featured in a 2018 road safety art calendar.