Data compiled by the Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) of the Ghana Police Service has revealed that, the total number of commuters killed in road traffic accidents in 2018 recorded a 12.76% jump over the figure for 2017.
This means persons killed rose from 2,076 in 2017 to a total of 2,341 in 2018.
It comprises 1,796 males and 545 females.
13,677 Injured in accidents
The number of commuters injured witnessed a 12.42% rise.
It rose from 12,166 in 2017 to 13,677 last year.
795 Pedestrians killed
While 879 out of the 3,300 pedestrians knocked down in 2017 died, 795 of the 3,257 pedestrians knocked down in 2018 also died, representing a 1.30% decrease.
22,025 Vehicles involved in accidents
The total number of vehicles involved in road traffic crashes last year rose to 22,025 from the 20,444 in 2017, representing an increase of 7.77%.
3,903 Motorcycle accidents
Motorcycle accidents recorded a 12.74% increase, from 3,487 to 3,903.
9,691 Private vehicles involved in accidents
For private vehicles involved in accidents, the figure witnessed a 9.03% jump from 8,877 in 2017 to 9,691 last year.
8,431 Commercial vehicles involved in accident
On the other hand, the number of commercial vehicles rose to 8,431 last year, an increase of 4.74% from the 8,080 in 2017.
More private than commercial vehicles involved in accidents
In effect, more private vehicles were involved in road traffic crashes than commercial vehicles.
13,645 Reported accident cases
Regarding the total number of cases reported, it increased from 12,843 in 2017 to 13,645 last year, representing an increase of 6.24%.
Eastern Region tops deaths
The number of commuters who died in each region is: Accra – 336, Tema – 124, Eastern – 405, Central – 221, Western – 137, Ashanti – 399, Volta – 172, Northern – 184, Upper West – 57, Upper East – 65, and Brong Ahafo – 241
Accra tops pedestrians killed with 223
The breakdown of pedestrians killed has been given as: Accra – 223, Tema – 47, Eastern – 122, Central – 78, Western – 57, Ashanti – 139, Volta – 44, Northern – 19, Upper West – seven, Upper East – nine, and Brong Ahafo – 50.
Breakdown of motor vehicles involved
Regarding the number of regional breakdown of motor vehicles involved: Accra – 9,328; Tema – 1,274; Eastern – 1,918; Central – 1,396; Western – 1,234; Ashanti – 4,347; Volta – 896; Northern – 427; Upper West – 188; Upper East – 329; and Brong Ahafo – 688.
Breakdown of reported cases
According to the data, the reported cases per region are Accra – 5,514; Tema – 754; Eastern – 1,248; Central – 904; Western – 894; Ashanti – 2,682; Volta – 575; Northern – 288; Upper West – 123; Upper East – 198; and Brong Ahafo – 465.
Corruption among stakeholders
Corruption among institutions responsible for road safety is a major cause of road accidents in the country.
These include rickety vehicles with road worthy certificates, fake road worthy certificates, unqualified drivers buying driver’s licence without taking the test, MTTD officers taking bribes from road traffic offenders, among others.
NRSC seeks review of law
Meanwhile, the National Road Safety Commission (NRSC) has appealed to the executive and the legislature to fast-track and pass into law a bill that will change its current awareness creation status to a regulator.
The commission believes that the change of status will empower the commission to play a major role, given that it would have the teeth to bite partner agencies and compel them to do the right thing.
Commission lacked the powers to sanction
The commission lacked the powers to sanction stakeholders for dereliction of duty.
Currently, if stakeholders refuse to take NRSC recommendations, no sanction can be applied.
For instance, if the MTTD receives a recommendation from the NRSC to enforce traffic regulations and they don’t do it, the NRSC has no power to act and sanction them.
A legal backing would empower the NRSC to demand compliance from stakeholders, such as the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) and MTTD, and, in default, apply sanctions.
Proponents say when transformed into a regulator and given the needed resources, the increasing spate of road accidents would be brought under control.
When granted a regulator status, NRSC would deploy safety inspectors to help with compliance.
With a regulator status, inspectors who identify rickety vehicles with road worthy certificates would inform the regulator to find out from DVLA how such vehicles obtained the certificates.
Findings of safety audits hardly addressed
NRSC conducts safety audits on the roads and make recommendations to the road agencies for redress, but such recommendations were hardly addressed.
Even though the commission is worried about the situation, it cannot do much to change it under its current mandate.
Causes of road accident:
- The first major cause of road accidents in Ghana is poor driving skills.
- Drivers talking on mobile phones while driving have caused several road accidents.
- Gross indiscipline is the cause in most cases amongst Ghanaians.
- Most accidents are caused by broken-down vehicles on our roads.
- It appears in Ghana there is a leeway for drivers to drive on worn/second-hand tyres.
- The unworthiness of some cars on our roads also invariably leads to road accidents.
- Over-loading of vehicles beyond their expected gross weights is a known cause of accidents.
- Fatigue driving is a known cause of road accidents by long-distance drivers.
- 10 per cent of road accidents in Ghana are caused by drink-driving.
- Over-speeding constitutes about 50% of road accidents in the country.
- The poor nature of some of our roads has also often been cited as a cause for some vehicular accidents in the country.
- Disregard for traffic regulations by most drivers also leads to accidents on our roads.
- Non-existent road markings and signs
Source: The Finder