In China, traffic rules are often ignored, and the country is rife with road accidents. The Ministry of Public Security sought to address this problem by implementing new traffic regulations on January 1st. The ministry handed down a list of new rules, including smoking and cellphone bans for drivers. One new rule in particular - dubbed the “Yellow Light Rule” - caught the public’s attention. AutoBlog reports:
On January 1, 2013, it became illegal to drive through both red and yellow lights in the Asian country. Those cited more than once will likely lose their driving privileges. The aggressive rule follows a crackdown by Chinese authorities aimed at reducing the estimated 250,000 road traffic fatalities the country experiences each year – a figure that makes road accidents the leading cause of death among residents between the ages of 15 and 44, says the World Health Organization.
A Caixin news brief reports the specific penalties of the new regulation, and the online uproar that the law caused:
[...]The law, put into effect by the Ministry of Public Security’s Traffic Management Bureau on January 1, requires drivers to come to a full stop at a yellow light. If they fail to do so, drivers will have six points deducted from their license. (Drivers who lose 12 points from their licenses in a year lose them.) People have taken to their Weibo accounts to complain that more accidents will be caused by people driving slower in anticipation of a green light turning yellow.[...]
CNN translates a few Weibo comments, giving us a glimpse into the online chatter surrounding the new rule:
“I’m among the first victims of the new rule,” wrote netizen @SunYiXuan on Chinese microblogging website Sina Weibo, “I hit the car before me this morning when the driver slammed on the
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