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Korean Skaters Challenge Pedestrian Tag

Skating in South Korea

Date Posted: September 27, 2003

An association of inline skaters in Korea is challenging a law that considers them to be pedestrians, and forbids them from skating on the main roads.

That organization has more thand 5 million members, and there it argues that inline skating should no longer be considered only a recreational sport, but should instead be considered a type of public transportion. Skaters say their sport is and healthy and environmentally friendly mode of transportation for travel to work and running errands.

Police authorities say they decided to designate inline skaters as pedestrians under the Road Traffic Act to prevent accidents. Police say a growing number of people are skating on main roads and freeways late at night and they feel this is a dangerous activity because cars have reported almost hitting skaters they did not see at night.

As pedestrians, inline skaters are required to abide by the regulations and provisions of Clause 8 of the South Korean Road Traffic Act, which confines pedestrians to the sidewalk at all times except when they are crossing the road.

Inline skaters say this is not a reasonable law, because it is more dangerous for skaters to be limited to the sidewalk where they will be mixed in with crowds of pedestrians.



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