Stop the carnage on the road
Road accidents in Fiji continue to happen but they can be avoided if a little restraint is used on all fronts. In the latest incident, a driver yesterday morning lost control of his car and went down a slope, killing at least one passenger and injuring the three other passengers. The accident happened along Ratu Mara Road between Samabula and Nabua. Two are at the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) and one at the Acute and Emergency (A& E) ward of the Colonial War Memorial hospital in Suva. The driver was suspected to have been drinking. There is a need to put an end to this carnage because it is hurting our country socially and economically. A large number of accidents are caused by over speeding.
Other road accidents are because of several factors, namely; the carelessness of the driver, the suspect condition of the road, mechanical problems or the waywardness of the pedestrian. Some people get drunk and despite Police warnings get behind the wheel and drive their vehicles in a dangerous way plowing through anything that comes into their path on the way home. Other accidents caused by drivers may happen when an over-exhausted motorist gets sleepy and falls asleep on the wheels. When there is a car accident we should be mindful of the fact that it can be avoided. However, when it happens the excuses given for the accident sometimes suggest that what happened was beyond the driver’s control.
Surely the road traffic regulations set by the Land Transport Authority is as good as any country; developed or otherwise.
Yes, the Police are doing their best to see that the regulations are followed. But still road accidents occur and people die. Often Police cite poor mechanical condition of vehicles, reckless driving, drink-driving, talking on the phone while driving and failure to observe traffic rules and road safety regulations by motorists as some of the causes of road carnage. But what is being done to address this? It is high time LTA digs deeper and come up with other road safety measures, namely restraint education, if the travelling community and pedestrians are to be kept safe on the road. The Government and Fiji Roads Authority are working constantly to improve our roads. But the onus is on drivers to adjust their speed according to what is suitable based on the road conditions.
It is action, not words that will ensure that road users reach their destination safely. A psychologist said – “When a young person is injured in a road-traffic crash, especially if the injury causes chronic disability, their lifelong earning capacity can disappear, their education can be ended or interrupted, or their family has to take on the burden of caring for them.” Everything must be done to avoid needless loss of lives or disability though injury from road accidents. Let’s wake up and do something drastic to improve the carnage that continues on the road.
Other road accidents are because of several factors, namely; the carelessness of the driver, the suspect condition of the road, mechanical problems or the waywardness of the pedestrian.
Our focus this year is to raise sufficient funds that will allow us to achieve our objective for the RHD project before extending our work into other health and medical services priority areas.
Sally Cooper Cure Kids Fiji director