Botnar Child Road Safety Challenge

Prioritizing and mitigating road safety at Schools in Mogale City, South Africa

Mogale City, South Africa


  1. Mogale City Local Municipality
  2. 3M South Africa
0 (2016)
Number of schools
Number of students


An estimated 14,507 fatal road traffic crashes occurred in South Africa in 2016, making it one of the most unsafe countries in Africa.

20% of all these fatalities involved children – many of whom were on their way to and from school.

Mogale City in Gauteng documented over 100 fatalities in the 30-month period from 1 January 2015 to 30 June 2017.


To identify and prioritise the school precincts with the highest road safety risks for children using a Multi Criteria Assessment (MCA) model.

To identify and prioritise measures to mitigate the road safety risks of children at schools with the highest risk rating.

To implement mitigating measures which will have the greatest impact on reducing the road safety risks of children, including road safety education at affected schools.

To transfer of knowledge through evaluating the impact of measures implemented on road safety of children at schools and document the implementation methodology to enable the replication of the model in other cities.


Developed a composite risk indicator to highlight the schools and areas with the highest road safety risk for children, taking into account quantitative measures (number of pupils, age of the children, income levels, mode of transport, traffic volume, etc.), qualitative measures (level of road safety awareness at a school) and spatial measures (proximity of schools to major roads and shebeens, location of crashes, population density, land use, proximity to other schools, etc).

This methodology was developed and applied to all of Mogale City, from which a priority list of 10 schools was identified. Working closely with the municipality, SARF assisted in implementing infrastructure measures to mitigate the road safety risks at these schools and measure its impact.

Worked together with the Gauteng Department of Education to deliver a Road Safety Education programme to the schools.


September, 2018 

Buy-in and support of Mogale City Departments Roads and Traffic, Local Ward Councillors 

There was strong engagement with Mogale City departments on a continual basis because the Mogale City Traffic and Engineering Departments assisted with the infrastructure roll out. Monthly project meetings were held with the Mogale City Traffic Police, Mogale City Municipality, RTMC, Department of Education, and Local Councillors.

October, 2018

Training in Star Rating 4 Schools methodology and assessment

December, 2018

Multi-criteria model with composite risk index, based on quantitative, qualitative and spatial criteria and risk assessment developed

SARF investigated the safety risks around the 10 selected schools. The risks mainly involved a lack of safe pedestrian crossing areas, inadequate sidewalks, missing or wrong road signs, and no “School Zone” high visibility signs. School principals recommended the installation of humps, improved parking, road changes and visible policing.

April, 2019

Prioritised list with 10 schools with the highest road safety risk 
Before and after Star Ratings for Schools (SR4S) conducted at 10 sites

The SARF carried out iRAP Star Ratings for Schools at 50 Schools in Mogale City and a list of all the one Star and two Star schools was drawn up.  From these 16 schools, a short list of 10 was chosen using a multicriteria assessment model that prioritised the schools with the highest road safety risk. Before and after SR4S assessments showed marked safety improvements.

June, 2019

Mobility Surveys, Speed Surveys, Pedestrian Counts

SARF conducted speed observations and pedestrian counts at nine schools. They were conducted at main intersections/junctions where children would cross on their way to and from school. The activity was undertaken at peak hours, in the afternoon and/or in the morning

Average vehicle speeds in 1 hour BEFORE school starts = 19 km/hr (range 8.6 to 40.3 km/hr)

Average vehicle speeds in half hour AFTER school ends = 15 km/hr (range 8.4 to 33.3 km/hr)

Mobility surveys were conducted at all the high-risk schools. The main modes of transport to school were: 59% walk, 28% school bus or scholar transport, 9% private car.

The children were most worried about strangers on their walks to school or being late for school than the busy traffic that they had to navigate.

February, 2020

Finalised road safety education plan and training manual for selected schools.

SARF together with 3M South Africa, the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) and the Gauteng Department of Education looked at the best Road Safety Education training material that was available in South Africa and would be accepted by the Gauteng Department of Education. 
A training manual entitled Learner in Traffic Education Guide was approved for use. In-class education was combined with practical road safety awareness training and scholar patrol outside each of six schools in the city. Unfortunately, this activity could not be concluded because of the COVID19 pandemic.

February, 2020

Road Safety Training

conducted by SARF, 3M and Mogale City Traffic Officers for students in Grade 1 to Grade 5 at Tsholetsega Primary School to educate them on best practices around road usage and safety 

October, 2020

List of appropriate road safety mitigating measures developed

SARF identified the most appropriate mitigating for each of the high-risk schools. These included visible road signs (Stop, yield, speed restriction to 40km/h and high visibility School Zone signs), speed humps and road markings (pedestrian crossing, stop lines and lane markings).  Additionally, walkways were constructed where it was deemed to be necessary. 
Mogale City Engineering Department and Mogale City Traffic Department approved the designs for all the schools. These were then implemented at the schools by approved Infrastructure Contractors. Construction started mid-September 2019 and ended in late October 2020.  The construction was delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.  Road marking and road traffic signs installations for all the schools was done by the Municipality.

November, 2020

Cost estimate for each specific intervention which has been identified to mitigate the road safety risk of children

Cost estimates (for infrastructural changes) were conducted on 8 of the 10 schools. In most cases the planned costs exceeded the actual costs.  

December 2021

Project ends


South Africa

Government officials partnered with and trained
Students engaged via training, education, and competitions
Teachers benefited from capacity building
Schools improved by road safety engineering
Parents trained and educated
Police officials collaborated with and trained
Drivers benefited from capacity building



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