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16 October 2007 | Printer friendly

Safe Road to School in Faro

Organisation: Portuguese Association for Child Safety Promotion

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Measures enforced for safe journeys to school

Road crashes are the largest cause of child and adolescent injury death in Portugal, yet 80% of children travelling to school in cars were found not to be benefiting from a child restraint system. According to the Portuguese Association for Child Safety Promotion, although legislation is in place, enforcement is poor.

Working with the “Safe School” department of the police and other local institutions, the Portuguese Association for Child Safety Promotion launched a programme to increase the enforcement of existing legislation. First, information was provided to primary and secondary students and their parents in 11 schools in Faro. The children watched a video, played games, visited a simulated road accident and met traffic accident victims in the local hospitals. Second, they organised “enforcement days” as joint ventures between the police and the students before and after school.

Results were impressive. The rate of use of child restraint systems went up from 20% to 89% in the seven primary schools involved. On the day of the campaign, 243 reports of infringements were made prompting local press coverage.

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