11 June 2019

Gambia: Accidents On Our Roads!

analysis

The recent fatal automobile accident between Faraba and Pirang in Kombo East has since stirred-up public debate on social media as to the methods The Gambia Police Force uses in issuing driving licence. The unfortunate incident, which is regarded as one of the most fatal accidents in 2019, claimed the lives of six people, leaving several others injured.

The accident was the result of speeding. It is high time we intensify our advocacy on the selfish and care free attitude of some drivers on our roads. The killings on our roads must to stop now. And both The Gambia Police Force and the public have a role to play in making this a reality.

What is the worrying part in this whole issue is that both drivers are in their young ages. Therefore, the Mobile Traffic Unit under The Gambia Police Force should henceforth scrutinize thoroughly the types of individual fit to hold the national driving licence.

We thus call on drivers to always drive with utmost care and focus as we fast approach the rainy season, a period that usually records the highest number of accidents in the country. Past experiences have taught us that road accidents are rampant during this period.

Careful driving is very important to prevent such accidents. It is important for all those involved in motor vehicle traffic, in particular the drivers and the police, to exercise caution in order to safeguard lives.

We do not need to remind anyone that good road conditions have been created to ensure smooth traffic for an accident-free society. The government on its part has done a tremendous job in this regard by introducing certain traffic laws like the ban on talking on a cell phone while driving, making use of seat belts compulsory, speed limit for driving in town, and a host of others.

Despite all these, it is rather unfortunate that some drivers flout some of these traffic rules, especially in places where there are no traffic police in sight. Thus, while driving, they exceed the speed limit, use their mobile phones, and sometimes even overload their vehicles.

We hope that drivers obey traffic rules; we also urge them to make sure that the treads on their vehicle tyres are good; this is very important because tyres that do not have proper treads are likely to skid during the rainy season.

Wipers should also not be forgotten, as the most important thing while driving a car when it is raining are the wipers. If they do not work, there is only one thing that should be done, and that is parking the car on the roadside. We need not talk about brakes because the drivers themselves are aware of its importance.

They are also aware that there is usually a high incidence of brake failures during the rainy season. The best way to prevent this is to have their brake fluid checked regularly.

Finally let the public be reminded it is important to help other passengers who admonish careless and reckless driving. It is not uncommon to hear other passengers lending support to a careless and reckless driver with the flimsy excuse that they are in a hurry. It is better to be late than to be referred to as the late.

Let's together make our roads safe at all times.

Remember that the life you save may be your own!

"I don't want to die in a car accident. When I die it'll be a glorious day. It'll probably be a waterfall."

River Phoenix

Gambia

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