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Zimbabwe festive road traffic accidents kills 127 people

by Staff reporter
07 Jan 2023 at 07:05hrs | Views
AT least 127 people died while 489 others were injured in nearly 2 000 road traffic accidents recorded over the festive season.

During the same time between December 15, 2021 and January 5 last year, 102 people died while 478 others were injured in 1 914 accidents recorded.

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi said as alluded to in the police statement issued on December 27 last year, most fatal road traffic accidents involved private cars, rather than buses and trucks.

Stricter licence requirements are set for bus and truck drivers and operators of these services have been monitoring their drivers a lot more.

During this festive season, 1 998 accidents were recorded of which 95 of them were fatal.

"The festive period has revealed that drivers need to self-introspect and reconsider the way some are driving on the country's roads. The bully and unruly driving conduct being shown by some drivers should stop in order to save lives on the roads.

"Police reiterate that drivers must be observant and concentrate while on the steering wheel to curtail fatal road traffic accidents which have been recorded during the festive season where in some instances pedestrians were hit while standing at bus stops or walking beside the road," Asst Comm Nyathi said.

In one of the fatal road traffic accidents which occurred on December 18, 2022, an unknown motorist hit a man aged between 30 and 35 years along 12th Avenue, Bulawayo at around 2am.

The victim died on the spot and the motorist did not stop after the accident.

"The Zimbabwe Republic Police reiterates that motorists should stop when involved in road traffic accidents, assist the injured if necessary and report all accidents to the police within 24 hours.

"In another accident which occurred on 25 December 2022 at 7.45pm at the 300km peg along Bulawayo-Victoria Falls Road, a motorist who was driving a Toyota Hilux vehicle with three passengers on board towards Victoria Falls, lost control of the car and veered off the road to the left, where he ran over seven pedestrians before swerving to the right side where he rammed onto a stationary Honda Fit vehicle which had six passengers on board.

"The Honda Fit vehicle overturned once and landed on its roof. As a result, three people, two pedestrians and one passenger from the Honda Fit, died, while 13 others were injured," Asst Comm Nyathi said.

Similarly, on December 31, 2022 at 10am, three pedestrians were killed after they were hit by a bus which had veered off the road along Zaka-Nyika Road at the 15km peg.

"As the nation gears up for social and economic activities in the year 2023, the ZRP implores motorists to be responsible and strive to promote road safety on the country's roads.

"The Zimbabwe Republic Police will continue to deploy police officers to curb road carnage and reckless driving conduct on the roads. The police need the co-operation of motorists for road safety to be to be realised in the country," Asst Comm Nyathi said.

Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe (TSCZ) managing director Mr Munesu Munodawafa urged drivers to be alert and cautious following an alert for heavy rains and floods issued by the Department of Civil Protection and the Meteorological Services Department.

"From the Traffic Safety Council of Zimbabwe point of view, one of the things that we want to remind Zimbabweans is to heed warnings that have been issued by the Met department of possible flooding in some areas.

"We want from that call, from a road safety point of view, to appeal to drivers, whether its public service vehicles or private vehicles, to take note of possible flooding and where such instances may arise, they should desist from crossing rivers in flood even though they are familiar with the route and with the bridges.

"The fact that its flooded, we appeal to the extent possible to minimise travel in those areas and to park where necessary when there are heavy rains," he said adding that when it rains visibility becomes impaired and roads become slippery.

Mr Munodawafa also appealed to drivers in urban areas to obey traffic rules and regulations especially when it starts drizzling or raining.

Vehicle Inspection Department Assistant Chief Inspector for Harare province Mrs Brigete Chimhau said their officers together with the police and TSCZ will continue to maintain visibility on the country's roads to enforce the law.

She said the VID also offers voluntary services, at a nominal fee, for motorists to have their vehicles inspected without them being impounded.

Source - The Herald
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