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Children’s travel as pedestrians: an international survey of policy and practice

Ward, H.; Christie, N.; Cairns, S.; Towner, E.; (2004) Children’s travel as pedestrians: an international survey of policy and practice. Presented at: International Conference on Traffic and Transport Psychology, Nottingham, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

A survey of OECD member countries was carried out to provide high level data on a consistent basis to identify and account for current patterns of child road safety . This paper reports the findings relating to children, aged 0-14 years, as pedestrians. Key survey elements included analyses of fatality data, relationships between socio-economic, demographic factors and fatality rates, and a questionnaire based survey. League tables based on average child pedestrian fatality rates were constructed for each OECD member country participating in our questionnaire enabling identification of the top five countries with the lowest pedestrian fatality rate as Sweden, The Netherlands, Finland, Germany, and Denmark. Few countries had quantitative information about children’s travel and its absence means that assessments are difficult about children’s safety and the relative risks they face, especially as pedestrians. There are large variations in the amount of walking between countries and growing car use is becoming an issue in one third of OECD countries. The main findings from the questionnaire survey were that the majority of countries did not have information on high risk groups but of those that did, the cross cutting themes of socio-economic and ethnic minority groups, young children and urban areas were identified. Three characteristics distinguish top countries in the League table from those doing less well: a strong approach to the introduction of infrastructure measures for pedestrian safety, including low speed limits in residential areas; conducting road safety campaigns at least once a year; and having legislation which assumes driver responsibility in an accident involving a child pedestrian. Having compulsory road safety education for children aged 6-9 years was a characteristic shared by most countries, as was the promotion of child pedestrian education and training initiatives and the commissioning of research. However there is lower research activity in less well performing countries.

Type: Conference item (Presentation)
Title: Children’s travel as pedestrians: an international survey of policy and practice
Event: International Conference on Traffic and Transport Psychology
Location: Nottingham, UK
Dates: 5-9 Sep 2004
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Civil, Environ and Geomatic Eng
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1357
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