Effects of tougher school zone laws on road traffic safety in school zones for children in South Korea

New school zone laws in Korea were enforced in March 2020 to increase penalties for traffic violations and preferentially install road safety equipment including automated traffic enforcement devices in school zones. This study aimed to evaluate the effectiveness of tougher school zone laws on school-zone-related road traffic outcome (RTO) rates for children aged 0–12 years in Korea. Monthly child RTO rates in school zones were calculated per million vehicles and per million children using data on police-reported road traffic crashes, registered motor vehicles, and registered resident population between 2015 and 2021: the intervention series involved school-zone-related rates and the non-equivalent control series involved total and non-school-zone-related rates. The effectiveness of the laws on RTO rates in school zones was assessed using the Bayesian structural time-series models under the controlled interrupted time-series design. The results found that considering the trends in the overall and non-school-zone-related RTO rates, enforcement of the laws did not significantly reduce any school-zone-related RTO rates for children aged 0–12 years, both per million vehicles and per million children: equivalent fatality, road traffic injury (RTI), severe RTI, minor RTI, and road traffic crash rates. The ineffectiveness of Korea's new school zone laws on child RTO rates in school zones implies that other effective measures need to be accompanied to improve children's road traffic safety in school zones, rather than just focusing on raising the severity of punishment. Further research is needed to ensure the effectiveness of school zone laws and measures to mitigate child road traffic casualties in school zones.

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  • English

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  • Accession Number: 01895394
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Oct 5 2023 4:26PM