Bid to curb fatalities

THE Western Division is still considered a red alert zone by the Land Transport Authority following the increasing number of fatalities recorded in the region over the past three months.

LTA spokesman Iliesa Sokia said the joint operation with the Fiji Police Force was to prevent further road deaths.

“Right now, the current road death toll is 37 compared to 26 for the same period last year.

“Out of that 37, 12 was recorded in the West.”

Hot spots identified were along the Queens Rd from Sigatoka to Lautoka and the Kings Rd between Ba and Rakiraki. “From LTA, we’ve set up three checkpoints and these are further supplemented by the police.”

He said by increasing LTA and police presence within the red zones, they hoped to decrease traffic offences and ultimately road fatalities.

“The main priority is preventing any more deaths because if we keep to this rate then there is a high chance that we might surpass the lowest national death toll that we have ever recorded.”

He said the country was about to enter the busy festive season and traffic would increase.

“According to our past records, road death tolls would increase in the last few months of the year because that is when there’s a lot of movement.”

Mr Sokia said the joint operation with the police would continue until the end of January, 2015.