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COVID-19 reduces road traffic deaths by 14% - Road Safety Authority

The Ghana Road Safety Authority has revealed that deaths through road traffic accidents have reduced by fourteen percent as of May, 2020.

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According to the Authority, this decline can be attributed to restrictions necessitated by the coronavirus pandemic.

Provisional statistics on road traffic crashes indicate that 5,465 crashes involving 9,163 vehicles were recorded, resulting in 958 incidents of pedestrian knockdowns, 909 fatalities and 5,703 injuries.

Compared to the same period in 2019, the Authority says the 2020 situation saw a reduction in reported cases and fatalities by 5.22 percent and 14.49 percent respectively.

However, there was a 12.64% increase in fatalities involving motorcycle users over the period.

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This is attributable to the COVID-19 restrictions, including the three-week lockdown of Greater Accra, Greater Kumasi in Ashanti Region, and Kasoa in the Central Region between March and April this year.

READ THE FULL STATEMENT FROM THE AUTHORITY

Road Traffic Crashes and its resultant fatalities and injuries have declined in the first five months of the year 2020. Provisional statistics on road traffic crashes from January to May, 2020 indicates that a total of 5,465 crashes involving 9,163 vehicles were recorded resulting in 958 incidents of pedestrian knockdowns, 909 fatalities and 5,703 injuries.

Compared to the same period in 2019, this year’s situation represents a reduction in cases reported, vehicles involved, pedestrian knockdowns, fatalities and injuries by 5.22%, 2.54%, 25.27%, 14.49% and 3.47% respectively. However, there was a 12.64% increase in fatalities involving motorcycle users over the same period.

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Though the reductions can be partly attributed to the reduced motorization due to the lockdown policy of government as a result of the outbreak of COVID-19, the Authority did not relent on its road safety education and advocacy programmes together with the Media and Civil Society Organisations as well as complimentary efforts in Enforcement of road traffic regulations by the Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) of the Ghana Police, Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) and other stakeholders through engineering and emergency response in the period under consideration.

While the relative reduction is encouraging, the number of fatalities and injuries through road traffic crashes are still high. The Authority cautions drivers to minimize their travel speeds and avoid wrongful overtaking, driving under the influence of alcohol/drugs and driving tired. Pedestrians are also advised to cross the roads at designated/safe points. Passengers must wear seatbelts and speak up against driver misbehaviour in traffic and Motorcycle riders and pillion riders must always wear their crash helmets when in traffic and stop on red at signalized intersections.

With the rains setting in, it is very crucial for vehicle owners to ensure that their vehicles have very good tyres, wipers, lights and are roadworthy.

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