Olongapo SubicBay BatangGapo Newscenter

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Poor traffic enforcement claims 263 young victims every year - survey

OLONGAPO CITY, Zambales - Lack of traffic enforcement and pedestrian safety knowledge kill or injure around 263 Filipino children below the age of 15 years old every year in the cities of Pasay, Quezon, Olongapo and Cebu.

This was disclosed Wednesday by Dr. Rafael Consunji, president of Safe Kids Philippines, during their 4th National Safe Kids Week held at the Olongapo City Elementary School.

In a survey conducted by SKP in the four cities, an average of 263 kids are involved in various accidents simply because they lack traffic and pedestrian safety knowledge, with around 40 percent of these accidents sustained while the kids are walking to and from school.

"Our survey revealed that with proper instruction, better information, pedestrian safety among grade school pupils is improving," Consunji said.

Among the other findings of their survey were:

- 55 percent more children could identify and know the purpose of "stop" signs;

- 45 percent more children know they had to look left and right before crossing the road;

- 39 percent children know the appropriate age to cross the street alone was 10 years and older.

SKP campaigns for better knowledge of pedestrian safety among children by teaching them basic traffic rules and understanding of traffic signs.

But Consunji stressed that while education intervention works, it must be reinforced with engineering and enforcement programs.

He added that their survey, conducted among 16,000 school children from Pasay City, Quezon City, Olongapo City and Cebu City, showed that proper information campaigns such as their "walk this way program" show an average improvement of around 25 percent in pedestrian safety knowledge. - John Bayarong, GMANews.TV

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