More people die on South Africa roads at night and over weekends. Over long weekends and school holidays, the situation is worse given the increased traffic volumes when it is estimated that about forty-five per day will die on our roads. The past Easter weekend witnessed amongst the highest ever death toll with close to 300 lives lost.
Road safety is everyone’s responsibility and everyone has the power to make and take correct decisions that will influence their safety and the safety of other road users. It begins with the simple “Three P’s System”:
(1) Be Prepared by ensuring that every aspect of the vehicle is roadworthy, the vehicle is not overloaded, all occupants buckled up and that the driver is sober, well rested and is carrying the necessary documentation. Plan the journey carefully to avoid travelling at night when experiencing a break-down, being involved in a crash, getting lost or facing unseen hazards like potholes, pedestrians and stray animals can be extremely dangerous.
(2) Be Patient and courteous at all times especially where traffic is congested at toll gates, construction stop-go sites, roadblocks and crash scenes.
(3) Be Pro-active: adopt a defensive driving style by observing far ahead, identifying possible hazards, anticipating their movements and taking the necessary defensive action timeously (changing speed, changing direction, using the hooter or using a combination of these).
“We cannot continue losing people to needless and senseless road deaths that are avoidable – the journey to road safety begins with every road user acknowledging their role and responsibility – and it starts with you, be the change you want to see,” said Ashref Ismail, a passionate road safety practitioner turned activist.
Ashref Ismail: A passionate Road Safety Practitioner turned Activist
Ashref Ismail is a member of the SA Guild of Motoring Journalists and founder of Road Safety Watch, a non profit organization committed to improving road safety through print, electronic and social media.
For further information and/or an interview contact him on 061 447 8506 or Ash@fmxafrica.co.za
The Road Safety Watch website is under construction and will be online shortly.