Land Transport Minister issues safety appeal to pedestrians and motorcycle riders
At the launching of the National Road Safety Month on Saturday 21 May 2016, the Minister of Public Infrastructure and Land Transport, Mr Nandcoomar Bodha, appealed to pedestrians and motorcycle riders to exercise greater care and responsibility on the road as they are the most vulnerable to death and injury.
It is recalled that out of the 139 persons killed in road accidents during 2015, riders/pillion riders of motorised two-wheelers and pedestrians accounted for the greater number of road fatalities, with 54 and 44 deaths respectively.
Reminding Mauritians that road safety is everyone’s concern, the Minister said that though the range of activities throughout the safety month aims at creating awareness among all road users, high priority will be given to pedestrians’ and motorcycle riders’ safety.
According to Mr Bodha, some 200 km pavement to the tune of Rs 1 b are required to improve the safety of pedestrians. “A request has been made to the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development for the provision of some Rs 100 m in the 2016-2017 Budget to begin the implementation of the 200 km pavement programme,” he stated.
The Minister also recapitulated measures being taken for motorcycle riders’ safety. They include education and training for motorcycle riders, and sensitisation campaign to highlight the vulnerability of the riders and encourage them to maintain situational awareness at all time with a view of limiting their exposure to risks.
Reiterating that road safety is a national priority, the Minister stressed the holistic approach based on law enforcement, education, and engineering adopted to fight road accidents and avoid death on the road. Mr Bodha emphasised the importance of road safety campaign that can help change attitudes and behaviour, and save lives on the road, and called for strong commitment and sustained efforts to road safety from each and every one.
The National Road Safety Month, featuring 36 activities scheduled from 21 May to 21 June 2016, has been initiated by the Ministry of Public Infrastructure and Land Transport with the collaboration of the Mauritius Police Force and various stakeholders from the public and private sectors and the civil society. It was launched on Saturday 21 May 2016 with a march and a roadshow from the Municipality of Quatre Bornes to the Municipality of Beau Bassin /Rose Hill.
During the weekend, the Police intensified its road checks and road safety patrols while on Sunday 22 May 2016, the Automobile Association held a Road Show starting from Jumbo Riche Terre ending at Mon Choisy Beach to sensitise the public on road safety.
Upcoming activities comprise distribution of stickers, pamphlets, booklets and other sensitisation materials; roadshows across the country; clips on road safety to be played in smart buses equipped with LED TV; programmes on Road Safety on the national Television and Radios; launching of mobile application on road safety; workshops, lectures and talk; and a series of events targeting primary and secondary school students.