The Traffic Police act to reduce killings on the roads

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KAMPALA – The Uganda Police Force (UPF) Directorate of Traffic and Road Safety has outlined 16 measures it will take to reduce road killings.

This after the latest UPF traffic performance report indicated that the number of fatalities reported in the country increased by 6%, from 4,534 in 2022 to 4,806 in 2023.

Management said it will carry out speed checks with a particular focus on black spots and built-up areas to protect vulnerable road users.

It has also promised to strengthen awareness of vulnerable road users on traffic laws and regulations, as well as improve driver and passenger helmet enforcement.

Management will liaise with the Ministry of Public Works and Transport to ensure they design and build infrastructure that protects vulnerable road users, especially pedestrians.

He also promised to carry out regular inspections of motor vehicles to ensure they are in good mechanical condition, increase modern control equipment for effective operations and non-tax revenue collection, increase traffic fleet to improve response and improve patrols in cities and along roads and increase ANPR cameras on roads to support law enforcement.

Other measures that he highlighted include strengthening the UPF’s capabilities in the detection and prevention of driving under the influence of drugs; improve visibility and safety along highways by equipping an integrated highway police; carry out additional training of traffic officers to develop the capacity to handle the increasing challenges of road safety, and improve the coordination and management of road safety through the effective participation of public, private and civil society organizations. civil society.

Others are recruiting and deploying more personnel to fill the existing gaps, acquiring sufficient land across the country for vehicle inspection and driver testing centers, establishing traffic courts to quickly handle traffic cases and finally, establish a biometric system for traffic violators.

Global perspective

The UPF cited the Global Status Report on Road Safety 2023, which said there were an estimated 1.19 million road traffic deaths in 2021, a 5% drop compared to 1.25 million deaths in 2010. .

“Traffic deaths and injuries remain a major challenge to global health and development. As of 2019, traffic accidents are the leading cause of death among children and young people aged 5 to 29 and are the twelfth cause of death when all ages are considered,” he said.

It also said that two-thirds of deaths occur among people of working age (between 18 and 59 years old), causing enormous health, social and economic damage throughout society. More than half of the deaths occur among pedestrians, motorcyclists and cyclists. 92% of deaths occur in low and middle income countries.

The African region has the highest mortality rate with 19 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants, and the European region has the lowest mortality rate with seven deaths per 100,000 inhabitants.

Uganda’s death rate was slightly lower than the African region: 16 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants, he added.