The Guyana Police Force’s Traffic Department has recorded a 37% increase in fatal accidents for the year 2020 so far, when compared to the same period last year.
The announcement was made by Traffic Chief (ag) Superintendent Ramesh Ashram during the launch of National Road Safety Week which is being observed under the theme “Stop Speeding; Don’t Drink and Drive. Stay Alive”.
For the year 2020, there were 115 accidents, resulting in 125 deaths of which five were children.
In comparison, the same period in 2019 recorded 84 accidents and 94 deaths.
A significant amount of these accidents was caused by speeding and intoxicated drivers.
According to the Traffic Chief, a total of 19,179 persons were charged for exceeding the speed limit; 786 were charged for driving under the influence of alcohol; 1,924 were charged for breaching traffic light signals; 986 were charged for failure to wear seatbelts; while others were charged for using their mobile phones while driving.
The Traffic Chief contended that the loss of life from road accidents is unacceptable.
“We as road users need to change our attitude and driving habits, follow the traffic rules and guidelines and adopt disciplined road safety measures, which is important in promoting safe driving practice which play an effort in achieving safer roads, streets and highways,” the Traffic Chief posited.
Home Affairs Minister, Robeson Benn contended that in order to bring about positive results, there needs to be operational intervention and accountability.
“It is painfully obvious that similarly to the global COVID-19 pandemic, that an awareness of personal actions, responsibility and accountability, along with the actions and practices associated with road safety are key to reducing the incidents of road traffic deaths and injuries,” Benn said.