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[Newsmaker] Police to beef up traffic safety in school zones

The National Police Agency on Sunday announced measures to step up traffic safety near schools, effective Monday.

According to police, around 620 traffic police officers will be relocated to school zones during rush hour. They will be deployed in areas prone to accidents, including places without surveillance cameras and where sidewalks and roads are not separated. 


Police will phase in limiting the maximum travel speed to 30 kilometers per hour in all school zones. Currently, cars can travel at 40 kilometers per hour, or even faster, in 588 of 16,789 school zones nationwide.

Police also plan to install more traffic cameras inside the protected areas during the first half of next year.

The authorities will enforce tighter control of illegal parking near schools, which often causes accidents by blocking children’s view. Between 2 p.m. and 6 p.m., police will crack down on illegal parking every 20 to 30 minutes using cameras and mobile equipment.

In addition, police will conduct regular safety checks on school buses. During a 40-day inspection of such buses in September, police discovered some 800 cases violating related safety regulations.

On Sept. 11, 9-year-old Kim Min-sik was killed by a car in front of his school in Asan, South Chungcheong Province.

Following the accident, the “Min-sik Bill” was proposed, requiring the installation of speed cameras and traffic lights in all school zones 300 meters from school entrances.

The bill is pending at the National Assembly, along with other traffic bills regarding children’s safety.

By Choi Ji-won  (