A Road Safety expert has stated that the only way to minimize accidents on the highways is for the government to commit funds into dualising the highways, especially the Accra to Kumasi stretch.
He said the 276 kilometers Accra Kumasi road is the busiest of all roads in the country which commercial vehicles can ply within a maximum of three hours and two and half hours for smaller and faster cars if the highway is dualized.
This, he explained, would also reduce the spate of highway robberies and accidents because people would not travel late or in the early hours in order to get to Accra or beyond early enough to transact whatever business if they are sure they can get to Accra or Kumasi within certain hours.
Mr. Richard Karikari, Director of Oli Best Road Safety Organization (OBR), an NGO which is engaged in road safety education in Ghana, made these suggestions at a training seminar organized for articulated truck drivers and truck owners of DUKENS Company Limited on safe driving and vehicle maintenance last Friday in Kumasi.
Mr. Karikari bemoaned the ever-increasing recorded road accidents in the region and stated that the distance between Abidjan and Yamousokro in La Cote D’ Ivoire for instance, is longer than from Accra to Kumasi but travelling between the two cities takes just about two and half hours because the road is a dual carriage.
He identified carelessness and bad attitudes of the drivers among others as some of the major causes of road accidents and emphasized that it is not advisable to drive when one feels tired and sleepy, or speed up when one is behind schedule, stressing that as a good driver, “it is better to be beaten by time than to try to beat the time”.
The Station Officer of the Ashanti Regional Police ICT, Chief Inspector Francis Toffah said 5,134 vehicles were involved in an accident in 2019 which was 781 more than those recorded in 2018 representing an 18 percent increase.
Chief Inspector Toffah who is also a member of the OBR said some 448 persons were killed through road accidents and crashes last year in the region which was 12 percent more than the previous year while the total number of persons injured in 2019 rose to 4,162 representing 34 percent increase over the previous year.
He said accidents in the region caused more deaths than any other deadly disease in the country and advised the drivers to value their own lives and those of others whenever they drive since somebody‘s carelessness can cause an accident in spite of one’s due diligence.