Casualty reductions in NSW associated with the 40 km/h school zone initiative
The 40 km/h school zone measure was announced in 2001 and implemented for all NSW schools. The intention of the measure was to improve the safety of children around schools. The development of spatial information systems in conjunction with the RTA crash data system overcame previous limitations in the identification of defined school zones in the crash data, thus a study of the impact of the 40 km/h school zone initiative was able to be undertaken. Geo-coded information from the Regional speed management databases and follow up site visits identified a sample of 820 school zones for the crash data analysis. Crash data within these school zones were analysed for the period prior to the 40 km/h hour school zone measure and the period post the measure. The results were analysed with respect to the underlying reductions in road trauma throughout NSW over this period. The introduction of the 40 km/h school zone measure was found to be associated with a significant reduction in child pedestrian trauma in the identified school zones. The analysis found that the 40 km/h school zone measure also benefited other road users.