Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — For six years, Vũ Văn Quang has helped hundreds of students cross the road safely. His two daily shifts at Trung Sơn Trầm Primary School, from 10 to 10:45 in the morning and from 16:15 to 17:00 in the afternoon, are inspired by disturbing accidents he saw years ago.
“I was obsessed with having witnessed students have accidents in front of Hospital 105 several years ago,” said the resident of Sơn Tây Town’s Trung Sơn Trầm District to the newspaper Kinh tế & Đô thị (Economic and Urban Affairs).
“Since then, I have volunteered to help them cross the road safely at busy hours,” he said.
National Highway 21A crosses in front of Trung Sơn Trầm Primary School with dense traffic-flow. Despite a sign indicating that the street is one-way, many drivers flout the rule, threatening pedestrians.
Trần Thị Thanh Nga, a parent of a student at the school, is concerned about the situation. “It is so dangerous. There are too many cars driving on the street at rush hour,” she added.
When the school bell rings, marking the end of the students’ school day, Quang starts his job.
“I go to the school 30 minutes prior to the finishing time. There are three people in our group. While two others stand on both ends of the street, I directly guide students to cross the road,” Quang said.
Blowing a whistle and holding a baton, he leads students across, group by group.
Đỗ Minh Anh, a student in Class 3B, has seen Quang everyday since he first began attending the school. “My friends and I always ask Quang to help us cross the road every day since we do not dare to go a step without him,” he said.
An enthusiastic volunteer
Quang is a retired army major. In 2011, he started working in Trung Sơn Trầm District as a school crossing guard. Thanks to Quang’s initiative, there have been no accidents involving pedestrian students ever since.
Lê Thị Thanh Xuân, principal of Trung Sơn Trầm Primary School, said she is grateful for his efforts. “The school is located near the busy National Highway. Therefore, we feel much safer having him helping students cross the road,” she said.
Phùng Văn Phúc, head of Trung Sơn Trầm District People’s Committee, said that Quang also raises parents’ awareness of traffic safety when they pick their children. Also, the local authorities contribute to his effort by calling for local agencies to collaborate in upgrading the damaged road and setting up signposts and speed bumps to ensure safety for students of near-by schools. — VNS