Stop road carnage now

EDITOR — The number of people dying in Zimbabwe’s roads is too much and government needs to act now to ensure that our roads are safe.

What is surprising is why we have so many accidents yet there are lots of road blocks on our roads manned by officers supposed to ensure our safety.

When travelling between Harare and Bulawayo, one comes across at least 10 roadblocks or speed traps but it seems all this has failed to stop the carnage on our roads.

The deaths have not only been caused by commuter omnibuses, but also private cars and conventional buses.

Government has the responsibility to stop this madness once and for all.

In Zimbabwe, years ago getting a driver’s licence was not a mean achievement, but nowadays some people acquire licences illegally without even going for a road test.

Corruption in this country has reached alarming levels starting with those responsible for the issuance of driver’s licences, police manning road blocks and the VID personnel, among others.

If the government is really serious about addressing the road carnage, all the issues I have mentioned need to be urgently addressed.

Nowadays, one sees young drivers with only a class four licence driving public transport vehicles.

Some of their licences would only be a year old but they are already being entrusted with the lives of more than 18 people.

Apart from these drivers using the wrong licence to transport the public, some are too young to be entrusted with such a responsibility.

Young as they are, they enjoy  speeding but do not have enough experience to avert any disaster should any mishap happen.

The government has been calling for an age limit to drivers of public vehicles but one sees young drivers driving past several road blocks without anyone stopping them.

Vehicles that are not roadworthy and even without number plates ply routes daily without any problem.

Some of them do not have insurance  licence disks among other requirements but still manage to go about their business.

I believe the whole transport industry needs an overhaul.

Those directly or indirectly responsible for getting revenues from the transport sector should also be held responsible for the high carnage on our roads.

Let’s stop blaming kombi drivers for the carnage, but there are other players that also need to play their part.

As Zimbabweans, we should stop being selfish and not focus on making money at the expense of lives, but should also have the interest of our passengers at heart.

Concerned Zimbo.

    Comments (2)

    Thanks a lot for the concern. I agree with you on your suggestions. However comparing the number of accidents to a decade ago will produce biased result as we now have more than a million cars traveling on worse roads than a decade ago. Therefore this means the probability of accidents also increases. Also due to the changing times a driver's licence is not something one can count among his achievements, its just lyk having "O" levels. Our roads are a major risk. Consider the Harare- Beitbridge road- how busy it is but it doesn't have a yellow line, if you swave you will found yourself on tree tops. Also as times are moving, the cars are becoming modern. The maximum speedometers you could see back then only counted to 140km/h but nowadays they are going for more than 240km/h and the roads are far much bad. The solution is to take care of our roads, widen them and maintain them well surfaced. The issue is not of overspeeding because the car designers who made those speeds of say 220km/hr knew very well that the car will be much stable at those speeds and they even tested it but behold on better roads. If we can have better roads, road worth vehicles, level headed drivers and true law enforcers we will be able to reduce road accidents to minimal.

    Mwana waKache - 1 August 2014

    The issue is not of overspeeding because the car designers who made those speeds of say 220km/hr knew very well that the car will be much stable at those speeds and they even tested it but behold on better roads. Have you travelled at that speed and found your car stable? See a cow cross the and you can stop that car?I lament that we still have drivers who believe that speed beyond prescribed limits is great.anywhere in the world speed accounts for the highest number of deaths on roads.in our country you say there is too many roads block and yet there is carnage everyday.police,besides what they are there for do not control the driver's actions on the roads.we as driver have a duty to drive safely and knowing the conditions of our roads including awareness that volumes of traffic have increased over recent years."REMEMBER SPEED KILLS" Again I see some drivers still believe that drink driving is a norm.This behaviour in many instances resultS in deadly accidents whose ripples are felt by all our relations:- families,parents and friends including work coleagues.Please take this advice Mwana kwache and spread the good message that SPEED KILLS. WE AS CITIZENS HAVE A MORAL DUTY TO DO WHATS RIGHT TO PROTECT OUR PEOPLE ON OUR ROADS,BE IT PEDESTRIANS,CYCLISTS AND MANY OTHER ROAD USERS.GOD BLESS

    Spectator - 18 November 2014

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