Dec 20, 2015 News
…Careless driving seen as major contributor
The 100 fatal accidents this year have resulted in the demise of 118 persons on the roadways thus far. However, in comparison to last year, there has been an 11.2 percent decrease.
This was revealed at a press conference held by the Guyana National Road Safety Council (GNRSC) and the Guyana Police Force (GPF) at the Guyana Traffic Headquarters in Eve Leary, on Friday.
Last year, there were 124 fatal accidents resulting in 133 deaths.
According to Traffic Chief, Dion Moore, among the highest number fatalities this year were pedestrians who numbered 41, followed by passengers of private motor vehicles and hire cars, 23; pillion riders, 17, motorcyclists, 16; and pedal cyclists 11.
“We recognise that there are a lot of good drivers and equally, there are a lot of drivers who, for vain reasons, choose to do the wrong thing,” Moore said.
To back up this claim, Moore made reference to the “number of cases being made” such as speeding, driving under the influence of alcohol and failing to adhere to sirens which were 22,663; 2,452; and 1,086 respectively.
Also, driving while using cellphones were 1,347; and music in public transportation, 3,727.
Moore stated that as part of the strategy to minimise accidents and fatalities, the GPF has already embarked on a mission to improve the learner/driver’s programme.
He explained that monitoring has intensified due to the allegation of unprofessional behaviour being portrayed by both members of the GPF and also members of the public.
Since this implementation, Moore said, persons who were scheduled to write the exams – after recognizing the changes – have began to backpedal; pulling out of the programme by absenting or by choosing not to write the exam.
Shahab Hack, a member of the GNRSC, said that while the council is pleased with the figures as opposed to last year’s, it was not a number they had expected it to be.
He explained that while the decrease is good, when they looked back at the 118 deaths on a case to case basis, many accidents and deaths would have been avoided if persons had only adhered to the rules of the road.
Hack then urged members of the public to make a conservative effort in the way they use the roadways pointing out that it would be reflection of the accidents and fatalities.
“Right now we are not looking good internationally…We are losing too many lives on our roadways for very, very silly reasons. People are using the roadways irresponsibly; it’s as if they do not care… We are calling out to religious leaders to speak to their constituents; we cannot afford to lose more lives.” he said.
Speaking at the conference was Devaugh Lewis, a representative of the Red Cross Society.
Lewis stated that the society plays an advocacy role in the GNRSC and will continue to do so.
“We are also going to lend our expertise in training in terms of first-aid, where we train almost 5,000 persons per year. We have included road safety in our first-aid. We have also engaged the police in training and trying to upgrade the learner/driver permit so that it includes a first-aid component,”Lewis said.
Lewis also said that the International Federation of Red Cross will be launching a personal safety booklet for road users. The booklet would entail ten commitments for road users and drivers would be asked to sign on. This is scheduled to start next year.
National Coordinator of Community Policing Groups (CPGs) Dennis Pompey, said on Friday that the GPF’s plans for next year will entail the intensifying of activities advocating safer road use, that is, school campaigns will continue across the country and systems would be put in place to have the activities quarterly, where they should have “something to promote safer road use”.
More emphasis would also be placed on making sure that vehicles are properly outfitted with the necessary requirements; proper tires, proper safety belts and vehicles that transport children will have to acquire proper facilities to ensure maximum safety to little ones.
It was also reported that there has been some engagements with several government ministries such as the Ministry of Public Infrastructure to aid in the upgrade of roads, the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of Public Security.
The GNRSC will also be issuing its first road safety magazine. It was scheduled to be introduced during November last but due to “some setbacks”, it will be launched in January next year.
Guyanese you are being prostituted by your politicians!
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