11 July 2014

Zambia: Let's Curb Accidents Together

A COHESIVE strategy involving all relevant authorities in the road sector is needed to reduce the high death toll on the country's roads.

According to the Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA) chief executive officer Zindaba Soko, death statistics recorded in the first quarter of 2014 reflect a death toll of 400.

The deaths have been recorded from a total 7, 767 road accidents that occurred countrywide.

In 2012, 2,360 fatalities from 28,247 accidents were recorded, while in 2013, a total of 1,851 fatalities were registered from 29,118 road accidents.

These statistics cause a serious frown and it has to be noted that fatalities have continued to be recorded during holidays as evidenced during the Heroes and Unity Day holiday interval, which recorded 22 deaths from 257 accidents on the country's roads.

Compared to the same period of the holiday period in 2013, the number of deaths increased, from 16 deaths to 22 fatalities. Last year, 198 accidents were recorded.

The statistics continue to show that there are no 'quantum leaps' in the pipeline to solve this equation.

Authorities such as the Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA), the Zambia Police, motorists associations, need to go back to the drawing board and find a lasting solution to this teething issue.

Road accidents resulting in the loss of many lives should not be a part of our daily lives, though death is a part of life, measures should be put in place in various circumstances to protect lives, especially when it can be avoided.

The country's roads should not be a death-trap and a source of scare for the travelling public, whenever they embark on a long or short distance journey. OPINION

Hence, it is inevitable that authorities in the road sector should employ various strides to address this problem.

Some accidents are caused due to negligence, alcohol abuse and limited understanding of road traffic rules and regulations.

These factors can be tackled if the gravity of seriousness deserving the issue is applied.

The year 2014 should not go down in the archives of the country as another year of increased Road Traffic Accidents (RTAs) and fatalities.

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