Let’s value road safety
24 April, 2018, 11:21 am
Police believe a series of car accidents in the Western Division should be a wake-up call for motorists and road users.
Fiji Police Force west spokesperson Wame Bautolu said this in the wake of car accidents, one of which resulted in the death of three people.
Apart from the fatal accident in Batiri, Sigatoka, last Friday, he said two more accidents were also recorded in Nadi on the same day.
Motorists, he said, should be more careful especially with the start of the school holidays.
Every year the Fiji Police Force traffic department raises the issue of road safety. Yet every year, we turn the other cheek, and ignore good advice.
It can be costly for many families in the end.
When accidents happen, they serve as a drain on society in many ways.
Aside from the trauma associated with the loss of lives, injuries stand as a telling reminder of how fragile the human life is.
In the end, we are made of flesh and bones that can be broken and maimed for life.
Last year director Traffic Senior Superintendent of Police Mahesh Mishra said most accidents were caused by speeding.
It was a factor that could be controlled by drivers to save lives, he said. The key element that was missing in the equation, he said, was voluntary compliance on the part of vehicle operators – the drivers.
Most drivers, he said at the time, learnt their lessons only after they were involved in an accident, which was a bad thing because it led to deaths and injuries.
People, he said, needed to have a sense of compliance to adhere to speed limits for certain zones on our roads.
There are hundreds of drivers who have no respect for road rules. They will switch lanes without their indicator lights on, they are the ones tail-gating, stopping in the middle of the road suddenly, and will definitely be among drivers who choose to speak on their mobile phones while driving.
They are among drivers who crowd the left lane of Nokonoko Rd for instance near the roundabout at Laucala Beach Estate, but instead of turning left, they quickly turn right towards Nadera. No one, it seems, notices and they continue to get away with this daily.
Yet, with the many inconsiderate drivers we have, there are hundreds more who will patiently follow the rules and hold their frustration and anger to reach their destinations safely.
Sceptics may even wonder about how we determine speed limits and whether they are actually suited to road conditions.
Every day Fiji needs drivers who are considerate, proactive and show great defensive driving skills. We need drivers and road users who will be happy to be alive.
These drivers will stick to the speed limits, plan their journeys well and arrive at their destinations alive.