President David Granger today reiterated his call for motorists to exercise greater care in the use of the roads, to reduce unnecessary accidents that claim the lives of both children and adults.
Amid the recent increase in accidents, the President said the deaths, disabilities and injuries and damage to property caused by accidents on our roads are deeply distressing.
“I extend the sympathy of my Cabinet and Government to the relatives, families, and friends of those who have been killed or injured as a result of road accidents. I wish the survivors a speedy recovery.”
The President noted that the road accidents represent a threat to human safety and noted that every accident is one too many.
“Every death is too great a loss that the country cannot afford”, he said.
In his statement, Mr. Granger also made reference to recent statistics which showed that persons between the ages of 16 and 42 years comprised more than three out of every five fatalities in road accidents.
“This insane increase in road fatalities have been caused, mainly, by persons driving at excessive speeds; driving under the influence of alcohol; driving without due care and attention and driving on roads which are congested or unsafe for other road users, particularly pedestrians, 30 of whom were killed,” he added.
The President also made reference to a three-point approach to road safety, he had proposed in his address at the launch of Road Safety Month.
The approach seeks to have more stringent enforcement of traffic laws including those proscribing driving under the influence of alcohol, playing distracting music and the use of cellular phones while driving.
It also speaks to having greater road safety education through a systematic and sustained countrywide campaign must be conducted; the drivers’ licensing process must be strengthened to ensure that only competent and responsible persons are certified to drive vehicles, especially passenger vehicles.
And to see the implementation of improved engineering solutions to ensure safer roadways, many of which were never intended to be highways or public roads; some must be “re-engineered” for safety.
In November, 21 persons, including three children, died as a result of 15 road accidents. And one hundred and fourteen persons, nine of whom were children, were killed in ninety-seven road accidents so far for this year.