A Study on Children and School Pedestrians’ Safety in

University essay from Linköpings universitet/Institutionen för teknik och naturvetenskap


Child pedestrian safety is one of the biggest safety issues regarding planning of a well arranged urban traffic. The fact that vulnerable road users suffer most from traffic incidents also raises concern for children. Children need special care while considering traffic safety. The factors are various that they differ from adults by many aspects. For their physically smaller size, immature ability to judge the traffic situations, lack of experience about traffic and mental deficiencies like losing concentration after short periods, they are much more susceptible to the traffic hazards than adults. Various studies have been carried and many applications regarding child and school pedestrian safety worldwide and the most hazardous periods were found as afternoon hours. Age factor generally is flexible but as the child grows older, mobility increases and risks become larger. The risk factors also include the social and economical environment that children living in good life standards suffer less than those are not. Education is also crucial on adopting the sense of road safety on children’s perspective. Simulation based studies have proved to be effective in order to draw child’s attention to the subject, however it should be combined with field trips to gain a more realistic and solid idea about the matter. Besides, engineering measures rise up as another milestone where roadside and land use planning is important. Traffic calming measures have proved to be effective to warn road users and thus form a safer traffic environment for children. Special applications for school zones such as flashing lights, narrowed crossways or 30km/h areas have been effective. The case study concerns the evaluation of child pedestrian safety in the vicinities of various accidents previously happened in Norrköping. Two methods were used to examine the degree of safety for the places of incidents. For locations near an intersection, road safety audit and traffic conflicts technique were applied, while, for the incident points along streets, only road safety audit technique was used. It is stated that, because of the multivariable aspect of the problem, collective application of various safety evaluation solutions would give better idea on the risk of the location and possible improvements for the future.

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