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07.09.2005 General News

Fewer motor accidents recorded in First half

GNA

Accra, Sept 7, GNA - But for the sudden rise in incidents of motor accidents in August, 2005 would have recorded fewer motor accidents than 2004, Mr Victor Tandoh, Commanding Officer of the Motor Traffic and Transport Unit (MTTU) said in Accra on Wednesday.

He said the first half of this year (January to June), recorded 9,762 accidents, with 690 casualties as against 10,020 accidents with 975 deaths for the same period in 2004. "This sudden rise in August might not help the third quarter", he said.

Mr Tandoh, speaking to the Ghana News Agency (GNA), attributed the spate of the carnage on the roads mainly to the human factor, lack of concentration or attentiveness, over-speeding, drunk driving, and fatigue.

"We still want to believe that drivers have to be patient, the funny aspect is that the good roads are rather promoting accidents." Mr Tandoh observed the imbalance between the increasing number of vehicles on the few roads, which contributed to traffic congestion, but said, that was no excuse for drivers to move on the sideways and over-speed on highways to make up for lost time in traffic.

" We need to adjust ourselves and co-operate with the Police in bringing the situation under control," he said.

He identified the Abeka Lapaz, the Saint John's Road at Achimota, and the road to the Ofankor Barrier as some accident black spots in Accra.

Mr Tandoh said the Police, together with the co-operation of the Transport Associations would continue with the educational campaign on the dangers of accidents and accident prevention. He said the Police suspended the practice of sending drivers to the classroom to teach them rudiments of road regulations when they were arrested because it was realised that most of the drivers had offended traffic rules many times and had been made to undergo the same exercise several times.

On stiffer punishments for recalcitrant drivers, Mr Tandoh asked: " The Prisons are already full, what kind of stiffer punishment?" He however said, under Section 8 of the Legislative Instrument 1663 of 1999, any driver arrested under the influence of alcohol, dangerous and reckless driving would have his licence seized and would only be given back when the driver had been retested and cleared by the Licensing Authority. 07 Sept.05

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