75 Die On Nam Roads Since 22 Nov

Preliminary results released by the Motor Vehicle Accident Fund of Namibia (MVA) yesterday show that the death toll between 22 November 2014 and 4 January 2015 is nine people less than the 20132014 toll during the same period.

Speaking at a media briefing in Windhoek yesterday, MVA chief executive officer Rosalia Martins-Hausiku expressed satisfaction over their festive campaign, pointing out that more lives could still be saved.

“We would have wanted different results. We actually wouldn’t wish for any death on our roads as it has become common with the festive season,” she said.

Martins-Hausiku expressed concern over last minute travelling plans, saying the next two weeks will be critical for MVA when children return to school. “On Friday, I went out myself. It’s really getting congested. We plead with the drivers and families to plan their trips. We cannot wait until Sunday and then we all get on the road. We can see that the vehicle population has increased,” Martins-Hausiku said. She aised road users to plan this last week how to get back to Windhoek, considering that schools are starting next week.

“Let us start returning our children this week already. Let us not all wait for Sunday. Definitely, because of challenges with transport, overloading has increased. If we spread our travels, start travelling today during the week, we will reduce congestion on our roads,” Martins-Hausiku said.

She also pointed out that 40% of those who die on the roads are aged between 16 and 40 years, while 12% is made of those aged between one and 15.

Martins-Hausiku also said the figures of pedestrians crashes are worrisome, because they make up 20% of the total crashes – third after roll-overs that make up 37% and collisions at 27%.

“We are still concerned about pedestrians. It is interesting that pedestrians are still a huge problem,” she said.

“Definitely, we would like to see lower figures. If we can preserve one life, it would make a difference for us,” she said.

Chief liaison officer at National Road Safety Council Ambrosius Tierspoor attributed the causes of road crashes to reckless behaviour by road users, including speeding. Tierspoor said the impact of speeding results in the severity of injuries. Although he said they can only do so much to save lives, Tierspoor added that they cannot do it alone without the help of all role players.

The MVA campaign, which started on 22 November 2014 will end on 15 January 2015. It was launched under the theme “Your destination, a reward for safe driving. Pledge to arrive alive.”

Source : The Namibian