INT J INJ CONTROL SA;Int. J. Inj. Control Saf. Promot.;03-Apr;2015;22;2
To investigate modes of secondary school students' commuting to school and their unsafe driving practices in Laos, we conducted a roadside observation in front of the gate of a selected school in central Vientiane in December 2011. Of the 544 students observed, the majority came to school on foot (43%), followed by motorcycle (36%), and bicycle (14%). Of the 195 students who commuted by motorcycle, 45 (23%) drove it themselves. Of the 150 students who commuted as pillion riders, 35 (23%) were driven by a student or another child driver. The prevalence of helmet use among students (3%) was much lower than adults (66%). It was common for adult drivers to wear a helmet but to leave student pillion riders unhelmeted on the same motorcycle. Carrying two or three pillion riders was also often observed. The study revealed the necessity for measures to promote safe travel to school.