No fewer than 306 people lost their lives to accidents, involving petrol tanker/trailers in 2016, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt Hon Yakubu Dogara, has said.
“This is in addition to 750 other incidents, which left victims with various degrees of injuries”, he added, while explaining that this necessitated the urgent intervention by the House of Representatives to ensure that such incidents were reduced to the barest minmum.
Dogara, while declaring a public hearing on the need for government to address the menace of accidents involving fuel tankers, organised by the Adhoc Committee to address the Menace of Accidents Involving Fuel Tankers at the National Assembly, expressed concern that despite legislations and concerted efforts by stakeholders, a good number of deaths recorded on our roads.
He stated, “Reports from the FRSC indicate that between January to December 2016, petrol tanker/trailers were involved in at least 338 cases of road traffic crashes, consisting of 306 death and 750 others with various degrees of injuries.
“The tasks before the ad-hoc Committee is to find out the causes of the accidents involving fuel tankers and other articulated vehicles. Whether they are as a result of the design of our roads, the vehicle, human errors, recklessness or mental state of the drivers and to liaise with relevant stakeholders to fashion out ways of reducing, in the short-run and ultimately eliminating these destructive accidents which are claiming unquantifiable number of lives and property across the country.”
The Speaker expressed optimism that the enforcement of speed limit, which the parliament approved last year, will reduce the number of accidents and make Nigerian roads safer.
“On its part, the House had last year, approved the installation of speed limiting devices on commercial and fleet vehicles and is passionately waiting for the takeoff and the anticipated reduction in the number of carnages on our highways.
“Road safety is a dynamic field and the National Assembly is poised to providing the institutional framework for safer mobility, roads, vehicles and post-crash care through increased budgetary allocation to the relevant sectors.
“These include those with the mandate for construction and maintenance of roads as well as increased co-operation between government and non-governmental organization for the proper utilization and overall safety of road users.
“I am pleased to state that as a legislature, we have put in place deliberate measures to achieve a vision of becoming one of the 20th safest countries, in terms of road transportation and mobility, by 2020 and meeting the UN decade of Action of reducing road crash record by at least half by 2020”, he stated.