How to reduce carnage and ensure safer vehicles on the roads
The Nigerian roads have witnessed many unnecessary deaths for years, such that the figures of road crashes fatalities continually scale up without restraints. Among other road accident-causing factors, vehicles with mechanical defects on the roads top the leading cause of the fatalities.
These crashes, besides causing deaths and injuries, daily inflict morbid fear of travelling, man-hour loss in traffic and revenue loss for individuals and business owners. And with weak enforcement policies, vehicle inspection agencies also lose their statutory rationale for existence, just as vehicle owners seek to acquire roadworthiness certificates as transactional documents to evade vehicle clampdown.
To address this issue and bring sanity to the transport sector in terms of policy implementation, there is need for concerted efforts from capable firms committed to investing and partnering with government in creating a working template for thorough vehicle inspection to make the roads safer not just for the issuance of road worthiness certificates.
This is long overdue. Across the globe, countries like Canada, US, Singapore, Thailand, France and Poland stand tall as compliant countries inspecting vehicles as a procedure, both for safety and environmental (emission) reasons, to ensure that it conforms to regulations requirements. In Africa, countries like Ghana, South Africa and Egypt are calling the shots in proactively campaigning for safer roads with roadworthy vehicles.
A well checked vehicle for inspection certifying a vehicle before the issuance of road worthiness certificate will have ticked the following safety checks: Brake efficiency test, steering system, suspension efficiency, chassis and its attachments, wheel alignment, emission testing, lightning system, headlights, body, axle, wheels, tyres, visibility, and underneath inspection, among others. This will essentially reduce the carnage on the road to human errors by drivers.
CVIS, pioneered by Temple Group Limited, is charting this new part for improved road safety in the country. Spearheaded by Prince Segun Obayendo, the CVIS model set up in over 18 states is a bold move to pick up from the damage years of neglect.
In Lagos State, the CVIS, operating as the Lagos Computerised Vehicle Inspection Service (LACVIS) in partnership with the Lagos State Vehicle Inspection Service (VIS), has instituted test centres in major local government areas such as Ikeja, Ikorodu, Epe, Ibeju-Lekki, Badagry, Alimosho, Lagos Mainland, Oshodi and Surulere in the bid to reduce road fatalities with clean and safe vehicles on the roads.
Beyond the setup of these centres, the next focus is on the government to get people to be aware of how CVIS affects them for the better. Tackling this thorny problem of defective vehicles on the roads requires collaborative effort of stakeholders in the transport sector on coming up with ideas and stimulus to effect the required behavioral change for motorists to see beyond the road worthiness certificate as a transactional document.
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