Road Accident: Motorcycles Worst Hit

Lack of light jackets and helmets, alcohol consumption, speed and disrespect for the Highway Code account for some of their woes.

In Cameroon, particularly the economic capital Douala, motorcycle riders commonly called “benskin” continue to increase exponentially, but their riders do not observe safety rules. About 3,400 people die every day from road accidents the world over (including Cameroon), the most vulnerable being pedestrians, cyclists, and motorcycle riders. About 23 per cent of road deaths are motorcycle riders. It is estimated that between now and 2030, road accidents will constitute the fifth cause of deaths in the world if urgent measures are not taken.

Following studies conducted in different countries, the factors responsible for motorcycle accidents include age, illiteracy, lack of insurance cover, alcohol consumption, inexperience in driving, non-respect of the Highway Code, lack of driving license, meteorological conditions, speed and risky behaviours. Motorcycles, it was revealed, are exposed to more dangers than vehicles because of their small size and less stable nature, potholes, unexpected objects on the highway, constitutes a serious threat to the security of motorcycle riders. The above statistics were revealed by the General Manager of Guinness Cameroon during a ceremony organised in partnership with the Regional Delegation of Transport in Douala to distribute light jackets to motorcycle riders in Douala October 14.

One hundred beneficiaries received two light jackets each during the ceremony presided over by Herman Tchaketong Adjota, representing of the Littoral Governor. The objective of the distribution based on the slogan; “Don’t drink and drive” is to reduce accidents and their consequences while boosting road safety, as the jackets are polished to reflect light, making the rider visible from afar both in the night and in the day. The 200 light jackets distributed constitute the first consignment of 6,000 jackets to be offered to some 3,000 motorcycle riders in the city.

Beneficiaries were also urged to make a choice between drinking or driving, and not to blend the two, as well as sensitised on the dangers of alcohol on lives and their activities. Tckaketong Adjota encouraged such a collaborative effort whose purpose is to efficiently fight road insecurity and reduce the rising trend of accidents due to alcohol abuse while driving.

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