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Regional News of Monday, 11 July 2016

Source: GNA

Rate of helmet use in Ghana low

May Obiri-Yeboah, Executive Director of the National Road Safety Commission (NRSC), disclosed on Friday that only 42 percent of riders and 17 percent of all pillion riders wear crash helmets.

She said a recent study carried out by the commission revealed that 37.3 percent of riders and 13.7 percent of pillion riders wear their crash helmets properly, while men were considered more responsive to the wearing of helmets.

According to her, the low usage of crash helmets among motorists had become a major concern for the NRSC.

Mrs Obiri-Yeboah made this known at the commission’s mid-year performance review conference in Wa.

She said helmets are important personal protective equipment for riders and its usage must be taken seriously, adding, “Without it, a motorcycle rider should not be on the road.”

The executive director of the NRSC pointed out that head injuries are the main causes of deaths and disability among motorcycle users.

She said the cost of head injuries are high because the patients frequently required specialised medical care or long-term rehabilitation.

Wearing a helmet has been shown to decrease the risk and severity of injuries among motorcyclists by about 70 percent, the likelihood of death by almost 40 percent.

“To substantially reduce the costs of healthcare associated with such crashes, we must abandon the excuses we offer for the non-use of helmets and develop a positive attitude to their use in order that they could reduce the rising incidence of motorcycle accident related deaths,” she advised.

Alhaji Amidu Sulemana, Upper West Regional Minister, expressed worry about the situation and emphasised the need for people to be safety minded while using the road.

Dr Seidu Gariba, Deputy Regional Police Commander, said he shares the concern of Mrs Obiri-Yeboah and promised that the service would work in collaboration with the NRSC to ensure increase usage of helmets among motorists.

This year mid-year review conference was on the theme: ‘Achieving The 50 Percent Reduction In Fatalities And Serious Injuries: An Assessment of Progress As At 2016’.

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