Home » General » 785 Killed in Traffic Accidents

AT least 785 people have been killed in road traffic accidents which occurred in the first half of this year, Transport and Infrastructure Development Minister Dr Obert Mpofu has said.In a speech read on his behalf by director for transport Mr Allowance Sango at a transport industry stakeholders workshop in Harare yesterday, Dr Mpofu said 7 114 people were injured over the same period.

“Statistics given reveal that as at June 30, 2014 this year alone, we have had 19 284 accidents, resulting in 785 people killed and 7 114 injured,” he said.

“I am also informed that out of the 19 284 reported accidents, over 200 of them involved public service vehicles. Although it may not be that public service vehicle drivers were to blame in all the cases, it is worrisome to note that such a huge number of public service vehicles were involved in crashes.”

Dr Mpofu said public service vehicle drivers who will be found without a refuse bin in their vehicles will be imprisoned for a year.

“Section 23 subsections 2 and 3 of Statutory Instrument 6 of 2007 makes it mandatory to have a bin in every passenger carrying vehicle and those who do not have such facilities risk imprisonment for a period of up to one year and are liable to a fine,” he said.

Dr Mpofu expressed concern towards transporters who ferried hazardous substances out of the stipulated time which is between 6am and 6pm.

Vehicle Inspection Department chief inspector Mr Joseph Pedzapasi said their 23 depots produced 160 000 learner drivers and they intend to inspect 500 000 vehicles on an annual basis.

“We need to inspect 500 000 vehicles in our efforts to root out unroadworthy vehicles that contribute to the country’s accidents,” he said.

Greater Harare Council for Commuter Operators secretary general Mr Ngoni Katsvairo said his organisation would work with traffic law enforcement officers to reduce road carnage.

“There is lack of clarity on the issue of phasing out or banning kombis and this is a noble idea, but will be hindered by unavailability of resources,” he said. “The ban will create serious unemployment and hinder those who benefit downstream.

“There has been duplication of duties and overlapping of roles between ministries of transport and that of local government. There have been undesignated loading zones in Harare, but we are not sure if the Coventry Road Holding Bay is the solution considering lack of consultation with stakeholders.”

Source : The Herald