The National Road Safety Authority (NRSA) has censured a report issued by the Bureau of Public Safety (BPS) dubbed ‘Ghana Public Safety and Crime Report-2019’ on Monday, February 17, 2019, indicating that the road is the most dangerous place for any Ghanaian to be.
In a statement issued by the Authority on Wednesday, the Authority noted the conclusions from the report were founded from inaccurate findings and analysis since the Bureau gathered its data through the media.
“Whereas the data on transportation-related events mirror casualties (deaths and injuries), that on the other indexes including violent crimes do not indicate the representation for injuries arising from them. It is thus mischievous to draw such conclusions based on skewed data,” the press read.
BPS on Monday released a report stating that in 2019, transportation-related incidents accounted for the majority of deaths and injuries recorded in Ghana causing over 900 casualties representing 45% of all casualties concluding that the road is unsafe.
This, the Authority disagrees because assessing the road safety performance includes absolute figures, which is; the fatality rate per 10,000 vehicles and fatality per 100.000 population.
It, therefore, cautioned institutions to desist from causing fear and panic amongst citizens.
“While the authority will not disregard the contributions of civil society for our collective good, due care must be exercised in the interpretation of crash data as they may have consequences for planning, confidence in the transport system as well as our national image,” it noted.
The Authority also gave an assurance that measures are being implemented to build a more robust road system in the country.
Read the full statement below:
RE: Ghana Public Safety and Crime Report 2019
The Authority’s attention has been drawn to a report dubbed ‘Ghana Public Safety and Crime Report-2019’ issued by the Bureau of Public Safety which among others concludes on the road safety situation merely on account of data monitored from ten portals associated with major television and radio stations in Ghana.
The report particularly suggests that ‘transportation-related events reported for the year 2019 was dominated by road transport events. 146 cases monitored accounted for 915 casualties representing 45% of all casualties recorded. This makes Ghana’s roads the most dangerous place to be in Ghana as it accounts for the majority of deaths and injuries contributed by a single public safety index’
The Authority notes that the conclusion is simplistic and founded on an erroneous premise. Whereas the data on transportation-related events mirror casualties (deaths and injuries), that on the other indexes including violent crimes do not indicate the representation for injuries arising from them. It is thus mischievous to draw such conclusions based on skewed data.
Be that as it may, it is disingenuous to draw these conclusions on the basis of cases reported only by the media when they exist a more credible and statutorily-sanctioned data. Provisional data on road traffic crashes reported to the Police as required by law, shows a 2.4% reduction in fatalities (deaths) and a 5.3% increase in injuries over the situation in 2018. Further, there was an increase of 4.1% in casualties for 2019 over the 2018 situation which is a far cry from the representation made in the report.
While the authority will not disregard the contributions of civil society for our collective good, due care must be exercised in the interpretation of crash data as they may have consequences for planning, confidence in the transport system as well as our national image.
Globally, the acceptable measure for assessing road safety performance includes absolute figures, the fatality rate per 10,000 vehicles and fatality per 100.000 population. Though there has been a marginal increase in the absolute number of fatalities, Ghana’s current fatality rate of 7.54 and fatality per population of 7.11 is better than the African average and considered as one of the leading lights in transitional economies.
The Authority will nonetheless continue to develop the structures required under its new mandate to help build a more robust culture of institutional responsibility for road safety.
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