The lives of pedestrians in Ghana are at the mercy of drivers most of whom are reckless when driving. Why? There are few pavements. Most have been taken over either by hawkers or shop owners.
Research by the National Road Safety Commission has revealed that pedestrians are at the highest risk of death on the road. Per the research pedestrian fatalities constitute 43%, cars-11.7%, buses-21.1%, cycle-4.3% etc.
Pedestrian fatalities in urban areas since 1991 to 2011 have ranged between 40 and 70%. Children make up a larger fraction of these deaths. Here’s a breakdown of pedestrian fatalities -73%-while crossing road, 14% while walking along roads, walking along edge of roads, playing on road, and other make up the remaining 13%. The highest of such deaths occur while crossing the road.
Head of the Department of Civil Engineering at the KNUST’s College of Engineering Prof Mohammed Salifu in interpreting the statistics said 3 out of 4 pedestrians are killed while crossing the road.
He lamented that drills helping children to cross the road have now become extinct.
All road users have responsibility not just drivers. So why do we have this problem?
Well here are a few; poor town & city planning resulting in few pavements.
Walkways have been taken over by hawkers, shops, cars and even homes.
Lack of enforcement of road traffic law by MTTU & AMA and indiscipline (jaywalkers) can also be blamed.
The pedestrian is consequently forced to share the road with vehicles, a danger which results mostly in deaths.
Safety experts fear pedestrian deaths will increase in years to come if nothing is done.
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