The National Road Safety Authority (NRSA) is speeding up processes, including stakeholder consultations, for the passage of a new Legislative Instrument (L. I.), to operationalise the provisions of Act 993.
Under the new Act, Act 2019, (Act 993) the NRSA is mandated to issue compliance notices to institutions or organisations that breach road safety standards and procedures in the construction of roads.
When passed, the L.I. would give NRSA the mandate to regulate the road transport sector and ensure lives are saved.
Mrs May Obiri-Yeboah, Director General of the NRSA, announced these in Accra, at the Commemoration of the 6th UN Global Road Safety Week Campaign, on the theme; “Streets for Life, Love 30.”
The campaign is aimed at checking road user indiscipline and elicit greater commitment from policy makers and implementers toward the road safety cause.
Mrs Obiri-Yeboa said NRSA had issued regulatory directives to road transport operators to incorporate best safety mechanisms into their operations.
She expressed worry that between January and April this year, 387 pedestrians had been knocked down, resulting in 97 deaths, in the Greater Accra Region.
“Research has shown that a pedestrian has 90 per cent chance of surviving a crash at 30km per an hour or lower and has almost no chance of surviving an impact at 80km per an hour,”MrsObiri-Yeboah said.
She said road traffic crashes killed 1,034 people and injured 5,658 within the same period.
Mrs Obiri-Yeboah said “We have reached a tipping point where neither platitudes nor half-hearted measures can save the situation. We must accept the reality for what it is. We must accept that road traffic crashes and deaths have become both a national tragedy and indeed, a matter of international concern.”
According to her, the United Nations Second Decade of Action for Road Safety (2021, 2030), commits Ghana to prevent 50 per cent of road traffic deaths and injuries by 2030.
“It is this ambitious target that underpins the development of our strategic interventions for road safety. We know too well that achieving this target demands bold, pragmatic, and human centered paradigms that adopt global best practices, change attitudes, and compels stakeholders in the industry to do more,” she said.
The Metropolitan Chief Executive (MCE) of Accra, Mr. Mohammed Adjoin Sowah, expressed worry about speeding on roads, saying “speeding on our roads, especially at places where there is a lot of human or pedestrian activity mixing with vehicular traffic, must reduce to the barest minimal to protect lives of vulnerable road users. 30 km/h streets are vital in efforts to shift to zero carbon mobility.”
He called on stakeholders to join the fight against the carnage on the roads to save lives.
BY AGNES OPOKU SARPONG