How law-abiding are the Japanese? We could pull up some statistics and numbers for you, but here’s a little incident that may be slightly unusual and goes to show how serious some Japanese are when it comes to keeping the law.
A driver in Oita Prefecture surrendered herself to the police because she beat the yellow light at a traffic junction. It wasn’t even a red light.
Traffic regulations may differ slightly from country to country, but the general understanding that green means “go”, red means “stop”, applies more or less everywhere. In places where the yellow (or amber) light is used, it usually signifies that the traffic light will soon turn red and drivers should slow down and stop at the intersection if you think you can’t make it across in time.
Recently, a woman in her 40s to 50s approached the Oita Prefectural Police at their Chuo branch, saying, “I have regrettably violated the traffic regulations, so please issue me a ticket.” The station staff were baffled by her request since they had never met a driver who turned themselves in requesting for a traffic ticket.
After questioning her for details, it turned out that the woman had been on the road and as she was driving across a traffic intersection, she looked up at the traffic light and realized that it had just turned yellow, but she proceeded to drive straight past it. Feeling guilty for not stepping on the brakes then, she immediately turned herself in to the police thinking that she had broken the law. The staff explained that “as long as you entered the intersection while the traffic light was still green, it’s not an offense”.
The police commented that, “if only everyone could drive with such caution, there would be no accidents.”
However, some netizens had different views on the matter:
“Having a high level of awareness is great, but it would had been more dangerous if she had abruptly braked there. Don’t beautify the incident.” “She’s too serious.” “She’s so strict with herself, I’m more concerned if she’s psychologically sound.” “Even if what she beat was a red light, if there wasn’t photographic evidence, they wouldn’t be able to penalize her.” “I wouldn’t want to drive behind her…Then again, there are so many drivers in Tokyo who stop their cars anywhere and everywhere, and taxi drivers who accelerate at the yellow light, sometimes even driving straight through a red light, I wish they would learn from her attitude of following the regulations…”
Source: Golden Times
Read more stories from RocketNews24. -- Going round in circles: Japan considers introducing roundabouts -- Japanese driving pet peeves: Not so different from other countries -- Road hog jams up 10 buses, keeps everyone waiting while he buys lunch© RocketNews24