With the festive season upon us, road safety is once again in the spotlight. Unfortunately, road accidents will make this a time of great sadness, instead of a celebration, for many families.
The only way to limit the carnage on our roads is to stop motorists from taking chances, driving unroadworthy vehicles, overloading, speeding and driving under the influence.
This can be achieved by visible policing on our roads and by effective traffic law enforcement.
The reality is that the Department of Transport only has 538 Traffic Law Enforcement officers in the Eastern Cape to patrol the entire province’s provincial road network. This is not nearly enough.
This translates to one law enforcement official for every 2 882 licensed road users in the province, which does not even include the extra traffic from motorists travelling through the province from other areas when holidaymakers visit.
More traffic officials are needed over the festive period, and we need a traffic service that is active 24-hours a day, 365 day a year.
People must be able to climb into their vehicles, knowing that they are safe to use the roads to travel and visit loved ones over the festive season, without putting their own lives at risk.
This can only be done, if there is effective policing of the roads, and reckless drivers, who pose a threat to others, are taken to task.
I am calling on the MEC of Transport, Weziwe Tikana, to ensure that there are more roadblocks, vehicle safety checks and random breathalyser tests on our roads this holiday season
There should also be pedestrian awareness campaigns throughout the province.
I urge Eastern Cape road users to be vigilant on our roads over the festive season. Drive safe, take a break and don’t speed. |These simple actions can help save lives.