General News of Saturday, 22 December 2012

Source: Daily Guide

Road Accident Record Scary

Provisional statistics available to the National Road Safety Commission (NRSC) indicate that as of November ending, 13,535 crashes have been recorded resulting into 2,069 deaths as against 2,119 recorded in 2011.

The gruesome road accidents have been attributed to human errors, vehicle breakdowns, non-road worthy vehicles and environmental factors like poor weather and road conditions.

However, Ashanti region has been the second most crash-prone region for years and the Northern regions have recorded very significant reductions of 32% and 42% as at the end of September this year.

Ing. Noble John Appiah, Executive Director of the NRSC noted that in order to ensure complete reduction in road crashes during the Christmas and New Year festivities, plans were far advanced for the NRSC to embark on some monitoring exercise to ascertain the readiness of the transport operators and their compliance with published operational guidelines.

He pointed out that the impending Christmas and New Year festivities come with their own safety challenges due to increase in mobility and funfair.

In view of this, the NRSC has directed that all its regional offices should liaise with its stakeholders to intensify its outreach activities focusing on the use of crash helmets, passenger and pedestrian safety and also deploy the enforcement task force to control incidence of speeding, drink driving and driver fatigue among others.

“At the end of the exercise we will be in a position to share with the public which operators are safe for patronage,” he pointed out.

A release issued by the commission and signed by Kwame Koduah Atuahene Head of Communications, NRSC noted that “the year 2012 marks the first full year of the implementation of the 10-year National Road Safety Strategy III and has been remarkable in many regards.”

According to the statement, for the first time, all Heads of the Public-sector Road Safety Implementing Agencies committed their agencies to the strategy by signing up to the National Road Safety Actions Plans, while the Commission entered into a strategic public private partnership to provide towing solutions to disabled and abandoned vehicles.

The statement reiterated that in the course of the year, the United Nations endorsed Ghana’s road safety management programme with an invitation to the 66th Session of the UN General Assembly meeting on Road Safety as the only African country to deliver a paper on the Ghanaian model.

“The Commission played a lead role to ensure that the Road Traffic Regulations 2012 (L.I.2180) came into force in July this year after a long wait to give effect to the Road Traffic Act 2004, Act 683 while translating some critical policy issues into law.”

“It is our expectation that the public will support these efforts in order to end the year safely for our collective good.

“The NRSC commends Ghanaians for a successful election and also conveys its best wishes to all road users and its stakeholders ahead of the yuletide,” the statement said.