CONSTANT news of horrific road tragedies hit the headlines of the country’s newspapers, with gruesome images aired on TV as Tanzanians continue to perish on our roads.
The recent tragedy which claimed the lives of five young Azam TV employees will be thrown into the archive of tragedies that continue to wreak havoc in the country, as we wait for the news of a new tragedy.
Apart from alcoholism and drug abuse, another major cause of accidents I believe is the fact that a good number of drivers are incompetent to drive motor vehicles on medical grounds.
As of 2013 researches by an NGO, Amend.Org proved that 3.4 per cent of Tanzanians die in road accidents in a year, 75 per cent of those stems from reckless driving, but this is just one side of the story on road accidents, the other being weaknesses of the road infrastructure itself due to over congestion.
This means that if the railways are completely dilapidated and road infrastructure has narrow passage then the rate of road accidents surge on correspondingly.
The chain of transportation networks rely upon government support and a well-functioning logistical supply and transportation framework.
Thereafter follows the role of drivers who must be well trained and equipped with technical experience. To make sure that our country rids itself of this vice, efforts should be put into place, including drivers being assured of deserving welfare, micro-sleep when they travel long distances and regular medical checkup of their mental health, but also their rate of blood alcohol content absorption.
But for new drivers should be well versed with the Road Distance Calculator (RDC) technology which can give them driving directions and maps.
Road Safety is a serious problem all over the world; its severity is more pronounced in the developing countries, especially in Africa.
Tanzania being one of the African countries is no exception in this regard. The government has made a commitment to tackle the road safety problem by developing and implementing a comprehensive road safety programme.
However despite this commitment by the government, the frequency of accidents over the past ten years has increased. The cost of road accidents in Tanzania has recently been estimated at 20 bn/- annually.
Overloading on the major highways is estimated at 20-25 per cent, hence being one of the causes of undue damage to the road pavement.