Road safety is everyone’s responsibility

Government has partnered with community safety councils in every province to bolster its efforts to reduce road accidents.

Statistics indicate that most people who die on the roads are young people aged between 20 and 34, according to the Department of Transport.

Collaboration between communities and government is needed to tackle the issues of road safety.

With this in mind, government has partnered with community safety councils in every province to bolster efforts to reduce road accidents.

It was the job of government “to empower communities as masters and shapers of their own destiny to identify local road safety challenges and then address those with [the safety councils]”, said Minister of Transport Joe Maswanganyi at the launch in Bela-Bela, Limpopo, of the Department of Transport’s festive season road safety campaign. “Our people … are the ones who must deal with these [issues] daily.”

Road safety challenges were societal problems, he added. “We need to collaborate and work closely with our provinces, municipalities and communities if we are to win this battle.”

Statistics indicate that most people who die on the roads are young people aged between 20 and 34, according to the Department of Transport.

“Due to their energy and militancy, young people are always at the forefront of change. We should, as leaders of society, allow space for these young people, through their organised formations, to play a role in addressing the scourge of road deaths that so badly affects them,” said Minister Maswanganyi.

Hlokomela-Phila campaign

In addition to the road safety campaign, the Department of Transport has launched the Hlokomela-Phila campaign in partnership with the South African National Taxi Council and the Department of Health.

The campaign aims to improve health and wellness within the taxi industry. Operators, drivers, commuters, street traders and other key players in the sector will be offered HIV testing services, as well as screenings for TB and non-communicable diseases.

Stakeholders in the sector will be able to test for diabetes and hypertension at taxi ranks and transport hubs across the country.

The minister called on everyone to work together to make this year’s festive season a different and memorable one.

“I have no doubt that we shall emerge from this festive season firmer and more resolute in our determination to turn the tide against the carnage on our roads,” he said.

Author

Ray Maota

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