7 November 2018

Kenya: Ignore Road Rules at Your Peril, Motorists Warned

Eleven months after President Uhuru Kenyatta ordered it out of the roads, the National Transport and Safety Authority on Tuesday warned motorists to brace themselves for tough times ahead of the December festivities.

NTSA director general Francis Meja said starting from Monday, the authority will go after indisciplined drivers as it enforces traffic rules.

REGULATIONS

Mr Meja said public service vehicles and matatu savings and credit co-operative societies will be held responsible for misdeeds of operators registered with them.

The authority is expected to spearhead the return of the public transport regulations, popularly known as the Michuki rules.

On Tuesday, it emerged that 15 per cent of matatu saccos have not complied with the regulations and this has contributed to the 2,585 deaths on Kenyan roads this year compared to 2,331 last year.

COMPLIANCE

"We are happy with what we are doing and do not want to come back on the roads. But there is a lot more that we can still do and starting Monday we will ensure full compliance.

It is the PSV owners responsibility to ensure the driver has a PSV licence," Mr Meja said yesterday when he addressed matatu owners on the new road safety campaign in Nairobi.

HORRIFIC

About 8,000 people have died on roads in the last three years. Just last month, 58 people were killed in a horrific accident involving a bus in western Kenya.

Last year alone, December was the deadliest with 358 deaths compared to 289 cases the previous year.

"PSV operators have always been cashing in on the festivities by making many trips at the expense of passengers.

TAMPERED

"They will be monitored starting on Monday. We will ensure all vehicles have upgraded speed governors and working seat belts," said Mr Meja.

A PSV is supposed to drive at a speed of 80 kilometres per hour but only few observe the limit either because they do not have speed governors or have tampered with them.

Mr Meja announced that vehicles will be required to install a new tamper proof speed governor system that incorporates a recording device.

UPGRADED

"It will be a real time gadget that relays information to a command centre. All existing gadgets will be upgraded to include this new feature," he said and warned of a major crackdown on drink driving.

Kenya has more than 200,000 registered public service vehicles with Nairobi alone having slightly above 20,000 registered in various limited companies and Saccos.

The Michuki rules require all vehicles to have seat belts and that drivers and touts in public service vehicles wear uniforms.

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