Look left, right, then left again – and then wait for the cars to go by.

Japanese people may be known for their impeccable manners at sports events, but that kindness only reaches so far in some areas of Japanese culture. Unfortunately, that seems to include their own pedestrians.

The Japanese Automobile Foundation (JAF) conducted a nationwide survey to see whether or not cars would stop for passengers wanting to cross the road at crosswalks without traffic lights. The survey observed the habits of just over 9,400 vehicles at two crosswalks per prefecture in Japan for a total of 94 areas.

▼ The sad but true results: only 23 percent of vehicles stopped for pedestrians.

Less than a fourth of automobiles stopped for people trying to cross the road on average. Surprisingly, the number has actually risen four points from last year, but you could still argue that it’s pretty unsafe for citizens.

Rural Nagano prefecture took the gold in this survey; an astounding 72.4 percent of vehicles stopped for someone waiting to cross the road. If you fear for your life, you may want to consider Nagano as a place to visit on your next Japan trip!

▼ Though as long as you’re at a crosswalk with proper traffic lights, you should be fine.

Japanese netizens reacted to the news with a mixture of grim acceptance and passion, with some even calling for change.

“No one stops if the car in front of them hasn’t stopped. I get why it’s only 20 percent.”
“I often used to cross the road at crosswalks without traffic lights, and the vehicles that stopped most often for me were police cars and firetrucks. Next was large trucks. It’s regular cars that won’t stop, sometimes even if you raise your hand. It makes sense that it’s only 21 percent.”
“Drivers say that they don’t stop because it’s dangerous when no one else is stopping, but if you enforce rules like this more strictly for about three years, people will learn to stop. Everyone has come to obey seatbelt and drunk driving laws since they cracked down on them, after all.”
“I don’t really care what your situation is. Stop! It’s the rule!”

While it’s not clear whether traffic laws like this will be more strictly enforced, JAF is calling for more awareness of the situation on both the part of drivers and of pedestrians. Either way, remember to mind your manners, whether walking, driving, or on public transportation.

Sources: Nico Nico News via My Game News Flash
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