IN current instances, our nation has witnessed an alarming surge in highway fatalities and vehicular accidents, prompting a essential want for all highway customers to stick to highway security guidelines.
Because the Land Transport Authority (LTA) collaborates intently with the Fiji Police Pressure, the Ministry of Transport, Fiji Roads Authority and different stakeholders to deal with this regarding pattern, it’s crucial for the general public to recognise the gravity of the scenario and actively contribute to creating safer roads by participating in accountable driving behaviours and appreciating the worth of life.
Through the festive season when celebrations and journey are at their peak, the LTA will proceed to strongly emphasise the significance of vigilance and strict adherence to highway security guidelines and requirements.
The objective will not be solely to forestall accidents and the devastating lack of valuable life, but additionally to foster a tradition of accountable driving that transcends seasons.
This may solely be achieved if we undertake a change in mindset and cling to highway security guidelines and requirements. As of November 15, 2023, there have been 72 highway fatalities in comparison with 38 for a similar interval final 12 months.
A quantity that hits house laborious when the causes might simply be prevented.
Dashing (33 fatalities), harmful driving (10 fatalities) and pedestrians at fault (9 fatalities) proceed to prime the record of causes of those unlucky lack of lives on our roads for the 12 months 2023.
Other than different causes akin to driver fatigue, careless driving, improper overtaking, drink driving and hit and run incidents.
LTA enforcement officers at varied checkpoints across the nation serve one function — guarantee compliance of highway guidelines and security for all Fijians.
That function is aimed toward saving your life as a driver, your life as a pedestrian and your life as a passenger. These measures are additionally important to mitigating the risks and dangers of unhealthy driving habits.
One troubling challenge that has come to gentle is the existence of a public group on Viber messaging app with greater than 13,700 members, sharing details about police and LTA checkpoints.
The LTA firmly discourages such practices and calls upon the general public to embrace their civic responsibility by championing messages that encourage secure and accountable driving practices as a substitute.
The LTA can be lobbying for a rise in visitors fines and the introduction of demerit factors to be issued by the authority as a deterrent to the alarming spike in highway fatalities.
It’s unlucky that some drivers proceed to ignore highway security guidelines and as we’ve seen with the current fatalities, the impression is devastating.
The authority will proceed to strengthen its focus and sources on driver licensing testing and issuance; improve highway security training and consciousness and roadside enforcement; in addition to car inspections to counter the upsurge in highway fatalities.
On the coronary heart of this matter is a shared duty to avoid wasting lives on our roads. We recognise that reaching this goal requires a collective effort from all members of society.
It’s essential for drivers, pedestrians, and passengers alike to internalise the importance of highway security guidelines and requirements.
This entails staying alert, refraining from drink driving, avoiding rushing, and eliminating harmful and careless driving habits.
The LTA’s plea extends past compliance with rules; it’s a name for a change in mindset. As an alternative of looking for methods to evade enforcement officers and checkpoints, people ought to actively promote messages that improve highway security consciousness.
This variation in perspective is crucial to cultivating a tradition the place the worth of human lives takes priority over shortcuts and irresponsible actions.
As residents of Fiji, we should recognise that highway security isn’t just a authorized obligation however an ethical crucial.
The lives of our fellow residents rely on our collective dedication to accountable driving. It’s time for every considered one of us to replicate on our behaviors on the highway and contemplate how we will contribute to creating our streets safer for everybody.
The highway forward is paved with the alternatives we make in the present day. The LTA’s efforts, coupled with public help, can usher in a brand new period of highway security consciousness.
By adhering to highway security guidelines and requirements, we not solely defend ourselves but additionally exhibit a dedication to the well-being of our group. Allow us to unite within the pursuit of safer roads, working hand in hand to make sure that each journey ends safely for all.
Street security suggestions from LTA for the festive season;
• Decelerate: Cut back your velocity to swimsuit the circumstances. Moist roads could be slippery and improve your stopping distance;
• Hold a secure distance: Depart loads of house between your car and the automobile in entrance of you, as moist climate can improve the stopping distance;
• Use your headlights: In heavy rain, use your headlights to extend visibility for your self and different drivers. Additionally, make certain your headlights and taillights are working appropriately;
• Keep away from sudden braking and acceleration: Sudden braking and acceleration may cause your car to lose management on moist roads, so as a substitute, attempt to decelerate easily and step by step;
• Watch out for hydroplaning: Hydroplaning happens when a layer of water builds up between the tires and the highway floor. To keep away from this, guarantee your tires have good tread depth and drive easily and thoroughly on moist roads;
• Be cautious at intersections: Moist climate reduces visibility, so take further care when approaching intersections, and look ahead to different automobiles, pedestrians, and cyclists;
• Hold your home windows and windscreen clear: A grimy windscreen can scale back visibility even in dry climate, however in moist circumstances, it will possibly turn into a security hazard. Hold your home windows and windscreen clear and away from particles;
• Keep away from driving via floodwaters: By no means drive via floodwaters, as they are often deeper than they seem and might sweep your car off the highway. In case you should cross via a flooded space, take another route;
• Examine your brakes: Examine your brakes often, as moist climate may cause them to turn into much less efficient. In case you discover any points, have them checked instantly by a professional mechanic; and
• Keep knowledgeable: Examine climate forecasts and highway circumstances earlier than heading out, and be ready to regulate your plans if obligatory. If circumstances worsen throughout your journey, discover a secure place to drag over and wait till the climate improves.
To make sure highway security compliance this festive season, members of the general public can help the LTA by reporting harmful driving or poor driving behaviour through LTA complaints platforms – Textual content to 582, electronic mail firstname.lastname@example.org. fj /email@example.com or calling the Name Centre on 3392166. Complaints can
even be filed
• IRIMAIA ROKOSAWA is the performing chief govt officer of the Land Transport Authority. The views expressed are these of the creator and never essentially of this newspaper through the LTA reside chat service on our web site at https://www.lta.com.fj/