March 21, 2019, 05:36:19 PM


Author Topic: Lack of Safety in Korea  (Read 10146 times)

Offline adamwatch

  • Super Waygook
  • ***
  • Posts: 338
  • Gender: Male
Lack of Safety in Korea
« on: February 16, 2011, 09:19:43 AM »
Has anyone ever tried complaining to the local police or their Senator about the extreme danger of being a pedestrian in Korea. I got hit by a car whilst crossing on a zebra crossing and the driver had a cigarette in one hand and a mobile in the other!
Why doesen't ATEK or someone complain about this. We are talking about peoples lives here and the lives of our students. This is a real danger we face everyday and no one seems to be doing anything about it.

Adam

Offline Ectofuego

  • Featured Contributor
  • Expert Waygook
  • ***
  • Posts: 920
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #1 on: February 16, 2011, 09:25:13 AM »
It is not our responsibility.  While we can complain, we are not citizens and dont have certain rights and can't vote.  A friend of mine saw an elementary student get hit by a bus 10 feet in front of him.  The problem was he was not paying attention.  That is usually the case as well.  People don't pay attention in korea when they cross the street.  I was in a taxi once; on thick ice and a kid ran full force in front of the taxi.  he didnt look in either direction before he crossed, just ran.  The taxi couldnt slow down.  If he hit the brakes he would spin out and hit other people, so he let go of the gas and prayed.  The kids barely got out of the way but probably didnt even know how close he came to dieing that day.

If anything, teach your students about safety and complain to other koreans about the problem here.
I'm Jason and I approve this message!

Offline elprofesor

  • Veteran
  • **
  • Posts: 171
  • Gender: Male
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2011, 09:33:34 AM »
this is one of the WORST features of South Korea.

The drivers are RECKLESS and LAWLESS.  Taxi's included.

They are so IMPATIENT for the red light to go green.  So as a result they'll just veer off

without a warning if they see that everything is clear from pedestrians.

Look at pedestrians just walking across on red lights.  THEY DON'T OBEY the laws.


When will South KOrea learn to stick by its laws?

Offline tamba_de

  • Adventurer
  • *
  • Posts: 29
  • Gender: Male
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2011, 09:49:49 AM »
I've talked to some people who have lived for many years in a few parts of asia and the rule seems to be that the streets run on a bigger fish rule.  The bigger the fish, the more right they have to the road.  That's fine with me considering that from a practical standpoint, the larger vehicles will do more damage, and smaller vehicles, like scooters, have more maneuverability to get out of the way.  What I don't agree with is the lack of respect for pedestrians, as they are the smallest fish on the roads when crossing, they sometimes get the least respect and this is a major problem.  The pedestrian ALWAYS has the right of way, its a human life with nothing protecting it crossing the street and this law should be observed in every country in the world.  In practice, this is obviously not the case.  In regards to crossing, I find that most koreans observe the little green man far too much.  As long as you look both ways and observe the proper channels of traffic that could be coming, you will be fine.  Personally, I have stared down drivers while crossing on the zebra and I had the little green man, they just look right through you and don't give a damn sometimes, it makes me want to punch their car really hard and yell "I know you can see me!!"

Offline aramella

  • Veteran
  • **
  • Posts: 168
  • Gender: Male
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2011, 10:03:24 AM »
We also have to realize that pedestrians don't have the right of way like in some of our home countries.   Also, no one stops at red lights here.  It's dangerous but something we all need to be aware of. 

Offline jehall

  • Veteran
  • **
  • Posts: 213
  • Gender: Male
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2011, 10:15:06 AM »
I was shocked to see Beijing was much worse than what I've seen in Korea. Cars and pedestrians. Hundreds of people going against a red light at a busy intersection! Cars trying to drive through a red light while honking at crowds of people! On bad traffic days here I remind myself it could be worse. But of course things should be done. I think traffic accidents are the number 1 cause of unnatural death here? I read something like that somewhere.

Offline dwebsterlfc

  • Veteran
  • **
  • Posts: 153
  • Gender: Male
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2011, 10:22:54 AM »
Koreans are generally the most abiding people I've ever met and most of them only cross when there is a green man, even if there's no traffic at all.

Taxi's, scooters and buses do seem to do whatever they want, when ever they want but instead of making a complaint etc why not just get on with things, stop, look and listen as you cross the road and then your problems will be solved.

Offline Wretchard

  • Super Waygook
  • ***
  • Posts: 408
  • Gender: Male
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2011, 10:24:57 AM »
Yeah once you get around Asia a little you realized Korea ain't that bad.

I remember the first time in China tryna cross big road. I'd just stay by the side of a Chinese person and follow their moves. Often would end up in between lanes of cars cruising by front and back. I was glad to get back to Korea!

Offline elspeth

  • Veteran
  • **
  • Posts: 118
  • Gender: Female
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2011, 10:27:45 AM »
Or you could just look where you're going.

Dunno dude.

Offline Tamillow

  • Waygookin
  • *
  • Posts: 21
  • Gender: Male
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2011, 10:28:35 AM »
I've talked to some people who have lived for many years in a few parts of asia and the rule seems to be that the streets run on a bigger fish rule.  The bigger the fish, the more right they have to the road.  That's fine with me considering that from a practical standpoint, the larger vehicles will do more damage, and smaller vehicles, like scooters, have more maneuverability to get out of the way.  What I don't agree with is the lack of respect for pedestrians, as they are the smallest fish on the roads when crossing, they sometimes get the least respect and this is a major problem.  The pedestrian ALWAYS has the right of way, its a human life with nothing protecting it crossing the street and this law should be observed in every country in the world.  In practice, this is obviously not the case.  In regards to crossing, I find that most koreans observe the little green man far too much.  As long as you look both ways and observe the proper channels of traffic that could be coming, you will be fine.  Personally, I have stared down drivers while crossing on the zebra and I had the little green man, they just look right through you and don't give a damn sometimes, it makes me want to punch their car really hard and yell "I know you can see me!!"

I agree with all these statements. I have watched koreans wait minutes with no cars coming for a green when walking. I also see the biggest fish rule. It's not just cars either. I am big and little kids in korea look at me like I'm a monster. If I bump into them, they get a big shove. I hardly notice it. Considering the Asian bumping and not acknowledging it culture, little guys probably have to take these things into consideration. (Although I've had the urge to truck over an ajumma or two.) Yeah but power rules here. So I recommend that you be a big man if God tells you you're going to be Asian in your next life.

Offline shelleydee

  • Adventurer
  • *
  • Posts: 39
  • Gender: Female
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2011, 10:34:54 AM »
I come from Toronto and there are many times that I cross the street on a red light (while walking).  I have family that comes in from New York city that does it but even worse- he'll walk and not care about cars that are coming.

But almost everytime I've crossed a street, whether or not a green man tells me too, I've never had a real problem, and I, for the most part don't get worried I'm going to get hit by a car (that probably will change if, for whatever reason it did happen)

However, I am scared shitless of the scooters.  I hate how they go from street, to sidewalk and they don't really have a horn sometimes and I never know which way to walk when I see them coming.  I'm more nervous of them than crossing the street.

Offline katrine

  • Adventurer
  • *
  • Posts: 55
  • Gender: Female
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #11 on: February 16, 2011, 10:40:43 AM »
I've also taken the stance of hitting cars that speed into the crosswalk, only to slam on the brakes when they realize there are pedestrians. I hit the hood of the car, and look the person in the eye while frowning. They know what they did, and it gets the message across.

The worst part is that the place where this usually happens (I'd say 70% of the time I cross this street) is the street right in front of my school, and the neighboring elementary school. In the mornings we have FOUR ahjummas holding flags so the children can "safely" cross the roads. Even then the cars hardly stop. It's utterly ridiculous.

Offline singletrackmind

  • Veteran
  • **
  • Posts: 192
  • Gender: Male
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #12 on: February 16, 2011, 10:43:14 AM »
I come from Toronto and there are many times that I cross the street on a red light (while walking).  I have family that comes in from New York city that does it but even worse- he'll walk and not care about cars that are coming.

But almost every time I've crossed a street, whether or not a green man tells me too, I've never had a real problem, and I, for the most part don't get worried I'm going to get hit by a car (that probably will change if, for whatever reason it did happen)

However, I am scared shitless of the scooters.  I hate how they go from street, to sidewalk and they don't really have a horn sometimes and I never know which way to walk when I see them coming.  I'm more nervous of them than crossing the street.
Yeah the scooters drive me nuts.  I think it gets better, though.  When I first came to Korea they scared the daylights out of me when they passed from behind on the sidewalk.  Six years later, I rarely notice them and they've just become part of life.  Maybe it also helps that I've actually seen a number of scooters stopped by the police recently.  My girlfriend says she feels sorry for them because they are working but I'm so glad the police are finally starting to enforce some traffic laws in my neighborhood!

Offline eveliens

  • Super Waygook
  • ***
  • Posts: 352
  • Gender: Female
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #13 on: February 16, 2011, 10:47:09 AM »
I've yet to be smacked by a car here, although there's been a few close calls involving narrow streets of rural Korea. The only time it was 100% the drivers fault is when I stopped (on the SIDEWALK) to talk to some of my kids across the street. The SUV came whipping around the corner and stopped about 4 inches from my body (on the sidewalk). Considering the kids do tend to dart out in the street, I was really glad they didn't that time!

Usually I am very alert for cars, but that's after being a pedestrian in the States for years. Too many runners/cyclists I knew back home got smacked by people not paying attention while making a right on red or running a "dark" yellow light.

In Cambodia, I managed to get clipped a few times by cars, so Cambodia made Korea look pretty good. Not to mention all the motos there! You think the scooter boys are bad in Korea... I learned to just keep going, they'll go around you. They don't like playing the which-way game either.

I'm more concerned with riding a bus in the mountains with the crazy bus drivers here! I usually opt for the train when possible.

Offline adamwatch

  • Super Waygook
  • ***
  • Posts: 338
  • Gender: Male
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #14 on: February 16, 2011, 10:57:18 AM »
An interesting question is why don't the police enforce the traffic laws? Anyone got any ideas on this one. Why don't police walk the beat and enforce the law?

Adam

Offline moonhaus

  • Waygookin
  • *
  • Posts: 11
  • Gender: Female
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #15 on: February 16, 2011, 11:01:20 AM »
Honestly, I've traveled around a bit in Asia and the middle east, and traffic in Korea is a dream compared to most other countries.

And has anyone stopped to check the traffic mortality rate in your own countries?
I've been hit by a car twice, and it was in the US. Not Beijing or Cairo or Korea. etc.

It happens. People are negligent everywhere. Let's just go on with our days without making cultural morality judgments, shall we?

Offline cowboy7

  • Super Waygook
  • ***
  • Posts: 282
  • Gender: Male
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #16 on: February 16, 2011, 12:01:49 PM »
Yeah, serious man.  Relax.  I agree that it sucks how people are put in danger but I think you are wasting your energy. 

As previously mentioned, a lot of it is attributed to the cultural differances.  I know that Korea is very westernized but please don't assume it'll be just like home. 

I know you're getting it from all angles but in the Philippines it is way worse.  If you get hit and die, probably still your bad.  Cross at your own risk.

At least here, other aspects of safety are much better. I'm not afraid of walking home late at night, getting stabbed, shot, mugged, etc.

Offline Paul

  • Featured Contributor
  • The Legend
  • ***
  • Posts: 2056
  • Gender: Male
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #17 on: February 16, 2011, 12:15:32 PM »
I dunno, they're bad, but as long s they're on the road, I can cope. My biggest concerns have been in the odd city districts with wide enough footpaths for a car to fit down them. Should be great for pedestrians, but in reality, I see cars just speed down there GTA-style because staying on the road is too slow/difficult/normal.
More primary school colours and shapes activity ideas and resources than you'd ever need - here
Holy free educational fonts Batman!

Offline eggplant_tyrant

  • Super Waygook
  • ***
  • Posts: 415
  • Gender: Female
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #18 on: February 16, 2011, 12:20:36 PM »
An interesting question is why don't the police enforce the traffic laws? Anyone got any ideas on this one. Why don't police walk the beat and enforce the law?

Adam

In my experience, they do. Lately, there have been police watching the major intersections near my place as often as not during the morning and evening rush. (This is actually a bit annoying, as the traffic light setup at this intersection allows me to cross from the bus stop to the sidewalk 100% safely about 30 seconds before I can cross 100% legally :)) As with any place larger than a one-street town, however, there are many more roads and intersections than there are police. They can't watch every car at every moment, and the minute people are out of sight of the police, they'll go back to driving however they want. This means that the unsafe style of driving is more of a cultural issue than a law-enforcement one, and I do think that steps are being taken both in terms of discouraging bad behaviour (like the increased number of foot patrols I'm seeing, which serves as a reminder of how to act, if not quite a proper deterrent) and in terms of diminishing the danger posed by that behaviour (by changing the order of green lights and protected left turns at an intersection so that people "sneaking through" at the last moment are less likely to run into pedestrians and each other, for example).

Offline kiwikimchi

  • Expert Waygook
  • ****
  • Posts: 600
Re: Lack of Safety in Korea
« Reply #19 on: February 16, 2011, 12:29:23 PM »
There is nothing more terrifing than seeing a speeding female Korean drivier in a huge 4wd with big bumper bars that doesn't know how to drive.

I say female because in this case she nearly ended my life
Men are no better. It would be interesting to know
what is involved to get a drivers license.