`Sensational’ accidents worry Traffic Chief
Guyana Chronicle
December 2, 2006

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TRAFFIC Chief Roland Alleyne says while there has been a decrease in the number of road fatalities and accidents for this year compared with the same period last year, he is very concerned about what he described as “sensational accidents”.

In an interview with this newspaper Thursday, he said that so far this year, fatalities were 108 compared to 144 last year for the corresponding period, while the total number of accidents was 132 as against 159.

He identified speeding as the main cause of serious accidents, adding that, consequently, the campaign against speeding has been intensified through the use of radars.

The campaign has been effective, Alleyne said, but noted that there is a need for more radars as those the Traffic Department has are inadequate.

Touching on some of the more recent moves by the department to help curb road accidents, he said the method referred to as “spotting” has been implemented.

He explained that with `spotting’, police officers are placed at strategic points to observe traffic violations which they then radio to another location where the offending drivers are taken into custody and charged.

Escorting vehicles has also been introduced, particularly along the busy roadways such as East Coast Demerara, East Bank Demerara and Rosignol in Berbice, Alleyne said.

He noted too there is a greater visibility of senior police officers on the roads and more foot patrols, particularly in Georgetown.

Dealing with corruption on the part of traffic cops, the Traffic Chief assured that a serious view is being taken of this matter and allegations in this respect are being tackled more promptly in an effort to minimise corrupt practices.

On the issue of the Traffic Court, Alleyne said he is satisfied with the manner in which it is functioning.

The Traffic Department, he also disclosed, is embarking on a more aggressive education and sensitisation programme and in this regard has begun a series of lectures in schools on the proper use of roads, video shows and talks and distribution of flyers giving road safety tips and advice to road users.

For this week which was designated Road Safety Week, the Traffic Chief said his message to all road users is: “Stop speeding. Respect other road users and be a good example to others.” (CHAMANLALL NAIPAUL)