Statistics from the Tema Regional Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) of the Ghana Police Service, show that some 170 persons have died so far in about 970 road crashes recorded from January to September this year in the Tema Region alone.
This was revealed at a day’s training workshop for heavy-duty drivers organised by Zonda Tech Ghana Limited in Tema on Saturday, November 27, 2021.
As such, the Regional MTTD said it will soon embark on a massive campaign to help reduce the carnages.
The training, which was organized in collaboration with the Tema Regional Police MTTD, the National Road Safety Authority, and the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority DVLA, benefited over 200 heavy-duty drivers operating in the Tema, Ashaiman, and Kpone areas.
A resource person from the Tema Regional Police MTTD, Sgt. Richard Timinkah, took participants through road traffic regulations such as regulation 107 of the driving code, among others.
Other technical matters such as regular maintenance of vehicles, fatigue, and defensive driving technologies were explained to the drivers.
Speaking to the media, the Deputy Police MTTD Commander for Tema Region, DSP Paul Bruce, revealed the high spate of road accidents and outlined plans the department intends to roll out to help curb the menace.
“From January to September 2021, the Tema Regional Police MTTD recorded about 970 road crashes, which resulted in 170 deaths. So, as we are approaching the festive season where we anticipate more vehicles on the road, the department will be embarking on a campaign to prevent drivers from using the shoulders of the road in order to reduce the crashes this Christmas.”
The Secretary of the Tema Regional Police MTTD, Sgt. Richard Timinkah, expressed concern about the abuse of sirens by hearse drivers, in particular, saying they do not fall in the emergency services category and warned of the department’s preparedness to clamp down on such errant drivers.
“This is to the hearse drivers. A hearse is not an emergency vehicle. The Tema Region is going out there on a campaign to give them a stern warning that hearses are not emergency vehicles. It is ambulances that are emergency vehicles. We will arrest such hearse drivers and seize corpses to the police morgue” Sgt. Richard Timinkah warned.
Speaking to Citi News, the Managing Director of Zonda Tech Ghana Limited, Yang Yang, said the training, which formed part of the company’s Corporate Social Responsibility CSR programs, was aimed at helping curb road carnages going into the festive season.
“I have lived in Ghana for the past 14 years and over these years, I have seen a lot of accident reports. It pains me when I hear of the huge road crashes and deaths. Therefore, as a truck dealership company, we believe that regular driver education could help reduce the menace. So we have decided to provide this training to truck drivers in the Tema area ahead of Christmas.”
Participants were also taken through climate change and how long-term changes in temperature and weather patterns were negatively impacting safe driving globally, especially in Africa. Richard Minkah, a road safety consultant who represented the Tema Regional DVLA Manager, Samuel Owusu Kwarteng at the training, noted that regular driver education is the sure way to reduce crashes in the country.
“In road safety management and practices, there are three ‘Es’ which are the engineering of the road network, vehicle engineering, and education. Since we do not have the best of roads and vehicles on our roads, the last ‘E’ which is education is what we have to intensify. All drivers are mandated to undergo refresher training at least once a year. If this is enforced, it would go a long way to reduce the carnages.”
Some drivers expressed their gratitude to Zonda Tech Ghana Limited for the training and assured of putting the new knowledge to use.