By Prince Paul Amuzu:
This year’s Eastern regional Road Safety Campaign has been launched at Kpong in the Eastern region with a call on all stakeholders to collaborate to reduce the incidence of road crashes, especially during the Easter period.
The campaign which was centered on the theme, Safety First, Think Safety and Drive Safely’’ brought together senior government officials, road safety and law enforcement agencies, chiefs, residents and road users to raise awareness on the need for road safety during the Easter festivities.
Speaking at the launch, madam May Obiri-Yeboah, the Executive Director of the National Road Safety Commission (NRSC) said the campaign was to compliment other road safety measures already in the country to raise awareness on best road safety practices. She said the campaign was significant in tackling the high number of road traffic crashes recorded in April and December every year.
The Executive Director also used the opportunity to point out some of the causes of road accidents in the country.
‘The situation is as a result of speeding especially in urbanized environments, pedestrians’ inability to use the road safely, motor riders refusing to yield for pedestrians at intersections and passengers being passive to wrongdoing by drivers,’ miss Obiri-Yeboah enunciated.
The Commission, Mrs. Obiri Yeboah explained had lined up intensive campaigns in readiness for the potential for increased risk during the festive season to reduce the crashes.
Minister for Transport, Kwaku Asiamah Ofori commended the NRSC for stepping up efforts to address the high road carnage in the country during the Easter celebrations. He said despite efforts by the Commission to reduce road carnage through regular visits to transport operators to measure the level of compliance of operational standards, the situation kept increasing anyway.
He also assured the NRSC of government’s commitment to enact laws to deal with challenges confronting the sector.
‘Government would enact a new Act to strengthen the NRSC to address existing challenges with their mandate to make it more responsive to emerging road safety challenges,’ he assured.
The campaign theme, he noted must conscientise road users to appreciate the need in developing a safety orientation and make choices that conform to it whenever they find themselves on the road.
Mr Asiamah said the Commission would collaborate with the Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) and Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) to ensure that drivers who lack road discipline are apprehended and sanctioned.
Mr. Kwasi Amoako-Atta, Minister for Roads and Highways, on his part, pledged to support the campaign by ensuring best that road maintenance practices were executed on all roads and highways to improve its conditions. As part of its road safety action plans, MrAmoako-Atta said the Ministry would provide and maintain dedicated tracks for the use of Inter-Mediate Transports (IMTs) to prevent the occurrence of IMTs sharing the road with motorized traffic.