, NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 11 – The Thika superhighway has recorded the highest road accident deaths according to National Transport and Safety Authority half year figures, followed by Mombasa Road, Waiyaki Way and the Eastern bypass.
According to the figures, more than 1,500 people have died as a result of road accidents, an increase of 1.5 pc from last year at the same period.
Of those who have been killed, Director General Francis Meja says more pedestrians at 614 have been killed with a significant increase in motorcyclists killed at 388, while 347 passengers died.
In the areas where the road accidents occurred, Meja says, “there is high population. The overall population of a particular city determines the exposure risk to road crashes.”
The population of both people and vehicles, he said is a major determinant on road fatalities.
“We register about 60,000 vehicles per year and about 120,000 motor cycles every year. When you compare with the accidents that we are recording, you can see there has been a gradual improvement,” he said.
Most of these accidents according to NTSA occur over the weekend, with Saturday recording the highest, in what Meja says is because of drink-driving.
At the county level, Nairobi is leading in the number of fatal accidents at 16.3 percent followed by Nakuru and Kiambu counties, while Wajir has recorded zero cases.
Other top counties include Kakamega and Meru.
“One of the thing we have analysed is that majority of these counties are within the key highways specifically the Northern corridor-the road from Mombasa to Malaba,” he stated.
To curb the trend, he says there will be more public awareness on the need to adhere to traffic rules and measures to manage the risk factor of speed, as a major contributor of road accidents adopted.
NTSA according to its Chairperson Lee Kinyanjui will also start fitting special detection machines in particular on public service vehicles, to ensure they do not drive beyond the speed limit.
Already, he said there was an awareness programme targeting motor cycles riders ongoing.
He said the newly launched driving curriculum will also help in restoring order on the Kenyan roads.
Under the curriculum, all instructors and examiners will be required to go back to class for retraining in order to understand how the new system works.
“From September, those enrolling for driving will not be taught using the old syllabus as the new one would have taken effect,” said Meja.
It also require all drivers to go back to driving schools for a full course after every 10 years in yet another move aimed at cutting road carnage.
In addition, drivers who are aged 60 years and above will be required to have a medical fitness report annually before renewal of their driving licenses.
The regulations are also set to clamp down on matatu drivers by ensuring only those above 30 years and with the requisite experience would be allowed to drive buses carrying 33 and more passengers.
The new driving school curriculum will come into effect by December this year.
Another measure will include introduction of instant fines and smart driving license; which help in profiling of notorious traffic rules breakers.