Lusaka, Tuesday, 2nd January 2018: Statistics on the New Year road fatalities, released by the Zambia Police today, are cause for great concern to the Zambia Road Safety Trust (ZRST), which are the highest New Year death toll to date. These numbers are a sad indictment on road traffic safety and enforcement initiatives, and calls on both the government, and driving public, to take serious stock of what these numbers mean.
According to the police, during the 2018 New Year holidays which was from 29th December, 2017 at 18 00 hours to 2nd January, 2018 at 06 00 hours, Police recorded 212 Road Traffic Accidents throughout the country of which 16 were fatal Road Traffic and 20 people were killed and 68 people were seriously injured. When compared to 2016 New Year period, they were 17 people killed.
ZRST notes, during the short period of 2017 Christmas and New Year, 42 lives were lost, an increase, over the same period in 2016. And during the whole of 2016, over 2200 people were killed. While these deaths cause enormous human psychological life time pain, they cost Zambia’s economy over K5 Billion, dragging many innocent families into poverty.
ZRST Senior Communications Advisor, Mailos Mwale said one death on the roads is too many.
“At this time of year, which should be a time of happiness and love and families getting together, to see so many families being ripped apart by these shocking accidents is a tragedy.
“We are therefore, calling upon, His Excellency, the Republican president of Zambia, Mr. Edgar Chagwa Lungu to take drastic measures against this road pandemic, in the same way he has reacted to 42 cholera deaths caused over 2 months”.
Notes for Editors:
Zambia Road Safety Trust (ZRST), a not for profit organisation, that seeks to create awareness on road safety and contribute towards reduction in road traffic injuries and fatalities. Zambia, with over 2100 deaths in road crashes per year and 30 fatalities per 100,000 residents, is one of the worst performing countries, as far as road safety is concerned. The Zambia Road Safety Trust has a particular role to play in terms of personalising the Road Safety Issue (advocacy), creating a sense of urgency and generating a demand for safety from the public.