ZRST joins RTSA on the road safety week to save lives
LUSAKA ¦ 12 December 2014 – 624 pedestrians lost their lives on Zambia’s roads in 2013 accounting for 34% of the total 1853 road traffic deaths, according to Zambia Police figures. Pedestrians are among the most vulnerable road users. Studies indicate that males, both children and adults, make up a high proportion of pedestrian deaths and injuries in many low and middle income countries. In Zambia children are often affected.
Under the banner “We are ALL Pedestrians”, the 2014 Zambia Road Safety Week (14-20 December) kicks off and is spearhead by the Road Transport Safety Agency (RTSA) who are accountable for Road Safety in Zambia. The Week seeks to educate pedestrians on how to protect themselves on the roads and contribute to achieving the goal of the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 to save 5 million lives.
The Zambian Road Safety Trust (ZRST) is calling on our government to take concrete actions to improve the safety of pedestrians. ZRST notes that there are many steps which can be taken to protect pedestrians on the roads. The Pedestrian safety manual by WHO and partners, promotes a focus on combined enforcement, engineering and education measures, which include among others:
- adopting and enforcing new and existing laws to reduce speeding;
- putting in place infrastructure which separates pedestrians from other traffic (sidewalks, raised crosswalks, overpasses, underpasses, refuge islands and raised medians),roadway lighting;
- creating pedestrian zones in city centres by restricting vehicular access;
- developing and enforcing vehicle design standards for pedestrian protection, including
organizing and/or further enhancing trauma care systems to guarantee the prompt
treatment of those with life-threatening injuries.
“Pedestrian collisions, like all traffic crashes, should not be accepted as inevitable because they are, in fact, both predictable and preventable. The reduction or elimination of the risks faced by pedestrians is an important and achievable policy goal. And reduction in the number of pedestrian collision will affect the overall road crash deaths in Zambia,”
notes ZRST Board Chairman Mr. Daniel Mwamba.“