RTSA chief executive officer Zindaba Soko
RTSA chief executive officer Zindaba Soko

THE Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA) has unveiled a robust and vigorous enforcement strategies to address the current road safety situation in the country.

RTSA chief executive officer Zindaba Soko told a media briefing in Lusaka this morning that if the current road safety situation is left unchecked, the country is posed to record an increase in the numbers of road traffic accidents.

“We have put up various interventions to curb road traffic crashes, enhance publicity and enforcement of the road traffic act. This is a matter that every road user must be involved in for us to achieve results if we are going to attain the 50 per cent reduction required by the United Nations Decades of Action on Road Safety that runs from 2011 to 2020,”he said.

Mr Soko said the agency will soon roll out a Transport Intelligence System on the road from Kafue to Ndola that will monitor traffic on the road.

He has also disclosed that the RTSA has devised a tentative country wide enforcement programme that will cover the major highways were road accidents are so prominent.

He has revealed that the Agency will scale up operations aimed at screening drivers driving under the influence of alcohol, over speeding and unlicensed drivers as these are the leading causes of accident on the Zambian Roads.

He has since assured the nation that the RTSA is working round the clock to see to it that accidents are reduced in the country.

Mr Soko said the behaviour of the drivers is unacceptable and advised members of the public to report PSV drivers who flout the RTSA rules by calling the RTSA toll free line 983 to report the drivers.

Last week, RTSA conducted an operation on a selected route arising from concerns by members of the public. The operation within an hour resulted in 46 Public Service Vehicles being impounded while 33 drivers were found to be unlicensed.

Meanwhile, Mr Soko has disclosed that between January and June 2015, the country recorded over 16, 000 road traffic crashes that resulted in 1, 028 deaths.

The first quarter saw 465 people die while the second quarter saw 563 people die from road crashes.

The same period in 2014 saw 865 fatalities by end of June revealing an upward increase of 19 per cent this year.

The RTSA boss attributed the causes of the crashes as follows; continued unacceptable road user behaviour, un-roadworthy motor vehicles; road engineering deficiencies; unlicensed drivers and drunk drivers among others.

He has noted that the increase in number of deaths is worrisome not only to the nation but to all stake holders as RTSA projects an upward trend.

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6 COMMENTS

  1. …….RTSA operates with one eye open and the other closed….in other words they are operating half asleep…their commitment to deal with the situation is only 40%…they also need to improve on statistics compilation…the figures they are publishing must synchronise with the increase of number of vehicles on the road…..the borders register over a thousands of vehicle trooping into Zed every month…about 40% of the so called licenced drivers are incompetent owing to half baked training they undergo thru unscrupulous briefcase driving schools and ‘licence buying’……process for PSV licence acquisition is very ‘weak’….. the 33 unlicensed drivers who were caught just paid a fine and are back on the road…..

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  2. I am glad prayers are not part of this regimen – this appears to be pragmatic enough. You see we have been concentrating on stopping vehicles and checking for silly reflector stickers instead of actually checking vehicles “on the move”. We also need to ensure that road signs are clear and reasonably spaced; most drivers will agree that speed limits are usually absent for kilometers on end – even at the point that police are flagging one down. Thanks, bwana Soko – this is the way to go. Also – please moderate those funny humps, some of which have now become hazards as they are flattened in some places and raised in some like the North Road…

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  3. At least a little sign of hope in the right direction. Many of us have been advocating for years that commuters should be given powers to ring or text the police of drivers who overspeed and drive under the influence of alcohol. that we need speed signs with tall grass on the highways cut for clear driving views. that good speed humps be erected (ask Australians or the West for help) and not the terrible humps which destroy cars. that too much loud music be banned in buses and minibuses. that overtaking lanes on be constructed. The list can go on. but why should every accident in Zambia result in deaths? Give commuters phone number where they can text too as they’ll fear to call while in the buses.

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  4. 46 impounded in one hour is testimony enough to tell us that most of these PS Vehicles are not road worth.
    And 33/46 simply implies that close to 72% of the drivers on these vehicles are unlicensed. Can you then wonder why we have so many accidents?
    My research on the conduct of these PSV drivers especially the smaller buses is that it is driven by 3 different people in a day. Mark my words, I said people. 1. from around zero four to about eight hours, before Police work up. Second (licensed) driver 8 to about 14 hrs. And the last one from after 14hrs. to kingdom come. Do you not think this can add on to the accident causes as each of the drivers wants to make so much in the short time given him?

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  5. That process has to be beefed up and must cover all provinces. Our Zambian roads are the most dangerous in the region. Such law less can not even be found in DRC or Zim, the fallen countries.

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  6. Placing Average Speed Cameras at the entry and exit of highways as well as CCTV can also help stop over speeding. Actually this can do a lot more than catch speeding drivers, it can stop corruption from officials

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