The death of 41 Kenyans in the Narok traffic accident on Thursday should be cause for deep reflection by all road users.
These were all ordinary people travelling from one Kenyan town to another, taking a trip which millions of us take every year. And they should have been able to take it for granted that they would arrive safely at their destination.
Kenya's horrific record when it comes to deaths caused by traffic accidents, has been the subject of many editorials, seminars, presidential speeches, and so on. But still the carnage continues. Recent innovations like on-the-spot fines, executed by mobile courts are a crucial step forward. But apparently not enough, as these mobile courts only function during the day, and the speeding buses tend to break all speed limits by night.
When it comes to public policy, governments do their work in two ways: either through the offer of incentives; or through the threat of sanctions. Thus far, most innovations on reducing road carnage in Kenya, have focused on imposing sanctions of one kind or another, on errant motorists. Policemen with speed guns are to be found in many places along our highways; and 'accident death-spots' are clearly marked out.
The efforts designed to discourage over-speeding - and the sanctions imposed on those who break speed limits - are clear enough. But there has been little attempt to create a system of incentives which might encourage the many hundreds of public service vehicle drivers who do not routinely over-speed, and have have never once been the cause of a fatal accident, to continue driving safely.
The time has clearly come to consider incentives alongside the existing sanctions. What those incentives might be, and how they could be administered - and in particular, administered without any trace of corruption - is something which will require expert advice, and the study of best-practices from all over the world.
But if the Thursday accident tells us anything, it is that what we already have in place is not enough; and that we need to go much further and work much harder to make our roads safe.