Almost every day, the media is awash with stories of road accidents that cost the lives of Nigerians and inflict temporary or permanent injuries on some others.
According to figures by the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), 10,050 people die yearly in road accidents.
Statistically, this means there are 27 deaths on our roads daily and this excludes hundreds of victims who suffer various degrees of injuries and permanent disabilities from such road carnages.
1. Over speeding: Some road users have formed the habit of over speeding each time they are on the road. Some believe in their ability to maneuver any difficult situation on the road, while others believe in their vehicles ability to riggle out of any danger. But these perceptions are not always correct. According to the FRSC, 50% of road crashes in Nigeria are due to over speeding. Motorists should therefore know that over speeding kills.
2. Bad roads: The failure of successive governments in Nigeria to fix the death traps called roads in Nigeria has no doubt caused so much pain to temporal and frequent road users. The bad roads across the nation are nothing to write home about. Government at all levels must be alive to their responsibilities to make sure all roads in Nigeria are safe and motorable. While road users should also exercise caution when driving in danger spots like potholes ridden portions, dangerous bends, roads threatened by erosion, roads enveloped with darkness at nights e.t.c
3. Over loading: This offence is mostly committed by commercial vehicles and some haulage companies. Although some private road users are also known to over load their vehicles too such that it endangers their lives because it makes the driver of the vehicle uncomfortable, puts the vehicle in distress and also affects other road users.
4. Bad weather: Many road accidents were due to unfavourable weather conditions either ignored by the driver or unknown to him/her. It is important for road users to check the weather conditions of their routes through the Nigerian Meteorological Agency to be sure that their intended routes and destination are weather friendly. Driving in unfriendly weather conditions can hamper smooth driving and can cause damage.
5. Poor vehicle maintenance: Road users must ensure that their vehicles are in good condition before they hit the road. This way, road crashes caused by badly managed vehicles are avoided to the barest minimum. All parts of the vehicle must be checked and re-checked to ensure the vehicle is in perfect condition before embarking on any journey, however short.
6. Bad driving habits: It is important for road users to respect other road users be ensuring their driving is not only for their own safety, but for others. Adhering to all traffic rules and regulations is also very important for safe driving. Indeed, road users’ behaviour has to change dramatically. Ignorance, lack of information and neglect on road safety in Nigeria has now made many preventable road carnages appear normal.
7. Fatigue: This is mostly common among commercial drivers and drivers of Very Important Personalities (VIPs) and government officials. These drivers are usually over worked and hardly observe rest. It is important for principals of such drivers to ensure that they observe maximum rest always, so that they can be refreshed and geared up for the next journey.
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