Thursday, 21st September 2023

Group canvasses 30km speed reduction in high risk areas

By Benjamin Alade (Lagos) and Rauf Oyewole (Bauchi)
21 May 2021   |   2:59 am
As part of activities to mark the sixth year United Nations Global Road Safety Week (UNGRSW), GreenLight Initiative has urged the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) to implement....

*Drivers won’t exceed 30km per hour in Bauchi, says FRSC

As part of activities to mark the sixth year United Nations Global Road Safety Week (UNGRSW), GreenLight Initiative has urged the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) to implement a 30km/hr speed limit policy in schools, residential areas and markets that are considered as high-risk corridors. As a biennial global road safety campaign hosted by World Health Organisation (WHO), UNGRSW brings together individuals, governments, NGOs and corporations from around the world to raise awareness on road safety and make changes aimed at reducing road accidents.

WHO disclosed that over 1.35 million people die in road crashes yearly, amounting to one person in every 24 seconds.

The body said: “Excessive speed is at the core of the road accidents, with one in three deaths in high-income countries being attributed to over speeding.”

Besides, people have devised means to work from home, which had reduced their mobility due to the COVID-19 lockdown in 2020, but the fatality numbers still remain as people still drive at higher speeds.

To mark this year’s sixth UN Global Road Safety Week 2021 in Nigeria, GreenLight Initiative partnered different organisations to implement advocacy campaign programmes.

Executive Director, GreenLight Initiative, Simon Obi, in a statement, noted that there was the need for urgent action to ensure that people enjoy safe road travels, as well as have healthy and green cities.

Obi said the call for action was urgent because it saves lives. “It promotes a healthy lifestyle as it helps reduce carbon emission. It is also urgent for the sake of children and youths as research over the years has shown that they are the most vulnerable to road traffic crashes.”

These programmes, according to Obi, seek to highlight the benefits of low-speed streets in urban areas as well as call on policy-makers to limit speeds to 30 km/h on streets where pedestrians, cyclists and other vulnerable road users mix with traffic. The programme further strives to support the attainment of the second Decade of Action 2021-2030 and the Global Road Safety agenda.

The theme for the sixth UN Global Road Safety Week is Street for Life – “Love30”. The week is designed to advocate for 30km speed reduction as well as strengthen the efforts to secure political involvement, commitment and policy change for low-speed and liveable communities where people walk, play and live.

MEANWHILE, Bauchi State Sector Command of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Yusuf Abdullahi, has recommended a speed limit of 30 kilometers per hour in urban or congested areas for all categories of vehicles.

Abdullahi, who was represented by the Sector Spokesman, Rilwanu Suleimanu, disclosed that the FRSC observed that speeding was responsible for about 30 per cent of road accidents in the country.

He explained that the corps would be using the sixth United Nations Global Road Safety Week, which commenced on Monday, May 17 and would last till May 23, 2021, to embark on an advocacy programme to enlighten people on the issue with a view to reducing road accidents and the resultant deaths in the country.