Accidents are the biggest threat to our lives, our careers, our families and businesses. In article contains information on how to reduce accidents on Nigerian roads and keep the highways safe for all users.
An accident is defined as an incidental and unplanned event that could have been prevented. This is possible when the circumstances leading up to the accident had been recognized, and acted upon, prior to its occurrence.
General examples of accidents include automobile traffic collisions or vehicle falls; home/workplace injuries arising out of fire, or contacts with sharp, hot or electrical objects.
While there were several causes of road traffic accidents nationwide, human errors were found to constitute about 90% of accident cases. Upon out of this percentage, drivers’ actions and attitudes make up 80% of road crashes according to research.
Other two factors causing road traffic crashes include mechanical errors and environmental factors – such as poor vehicle maintenance attitude or poor facilities, bad road network and adverse weather conditions among others.
Why Drivers’ Actions and Attitudes Cause Accidents?
A 2012 FRSC report reveled that over 4,200 people were killed in road related accidents across the country. According to the report, this undesirable increase in the number of deaths and injuries is due to the fact that close to 45% of drivers are not knowledgeable about the road signs and safe driving techniques.
The ‘I don’t care’ attitude of many Nigerian drivers to human life had been found as one of the major factors against road crash prevention in Nigeria. Many Nigerians don’t want to pay money to be properly educated; they don’t think it’s necessary or compulsory to acquire a formal education on the use of motor vehicles or the arts of safe driving.
According to the Corps Public Education Officer, FRSC Headquarters, Abuja, Corps Commander Imoh Etuk; drivers without basic and formal driving training are potential road hazards:
“Being taught properly by certified instructors is important. It’s also very important that first-time drivers are correctly taught the basic rudiments of driving. Most accidents happen because people don’t have the knowledge on how to drive, they don’t obey traffic rules and regulations, and they take lives for granted,” he said.
In responding to the need to check the increasing menace of road traffic crashes in Nigeria, the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) came up with the FRSC Standardization Scheme in 2007. The Act required that every Nigerian should attend a driving school and get a proper certificate on driving before they can process and secure the license to drive on the Nigerian roads.
This scheme is also undertaken through inspections and assessments of all the drivers’ education centers in Nigeria to ensure that minimum standards are met; regarding the driving school buildings, instructors, and facilities. By ensuring that the environment are in conformity with safety guidelines before certification and licensing is granted to driving school operators.
Since inception in 2015, AB Drives Nigeria has been working behind the scenes to change the attitudes surrounding accidents in Nigeria. By carrying out research, influencing, informing; auditing and providing support to individuals, agencies and corporate businesses.
Our new Drivers Safety Schemes are shaping the society for the better, preventing thousands of deaths and serious injuries all the way. Below are 9 ways individuals can take in order to reduce accidents on Nigerian roads. The governments and transport management agencies also have a role to play by enforcing the right driving habits and traffic rules:
How to Reduce Accidents on Nigerian Roads: 9 Ways
#1. Take Responsibility:
As a Nigerian citizen or tourist who is 18 years or above; and willing to drive on the Nigerian roads. Think safety first! Attend a formal driving school to learn the right skills. And get a valid Driver’s License to drive!
#2. Avoid drunk and drive
Driving under the influence of Alcohol or Drugs is a serious offense; it’s dangerous and unfortunate to all that are involved: Get the right attitude always, don’t drink and drive – it dulls your mind and can lead to fatal accidents.
#3. Have good vehicle maintenance culture
Poor vehicle maintenance can lead to unexpected road crashes. Before you drive your car, your van, truck or motorcycle; always ensure that the vehicle is in good working condition. Consult your auto mechanics or visit auto workshops for routine checks.
#4. Always pack your vehicle at the right side of the road
Indiscriminate packing can lead to vehicular holdups and accidents. Find the best place to pack your vehicles; do not obstruct vehicular or pedestrian movements. Things might happen while you are not around and this may cause injuries to other road users.
#5. Do not drive without your seat belt on
Driving without your Seat Belts is a serious road traffic offense in Nigeria and across the world. The best protection you have as a driver or passenger inside the vehicle in any eventually is the seat belt. Use your seat belts! They are there for your own safety.
#6. Pay attention on the road
Lack of concentration is the cause of many road crashes. While driving, avoid distractions like talking with your passengers, eating food with one hand and driving with another; making phone calls or checking your text messages.
Just imagine it; the result of lack of concentration could be head on collision – if you are on high speed.
#7. Don’t be too sure
Over confidence is another regrettable mistake that have taken may lives over the years.
Despite your years of experience as a driver or familiarity with a particular road or vehicle; don’t think you are the master of the roads.
While approaching T-Junction or Roundabout; remember to obey the traffic signs and the signal lights, including lights at pedestrian crossings. (C-Caution and Observe Danger!)
#8. Keep your speed with the limit
Over speeding can kill every passenger on board. Yesss! Keep in mind that lives are at stake whenever you are running out of controls.
Can’t you just be late? This could be a matter of just 10 to 20 minutes difference. Do not exceed the legal speed limits in a particular state or federal road- they are there for a reason.
#9. Know when you’re tired and have some rest
Tiredness can lead to reckless driving or accident. If you become tired or sleepy while driving, it is best to rest, or, if possible, change the driver.
Being tired slows down your human reactions and thinking; making driving hazardous activity.
Wrapping up: How to Reduce Accidents on Nigerian Roads
So you have it now: 9 Ways on How to Reduce Accidents on Nigerian Roads as a driver. We hope you will become a better driver after reading this post?
Governments at all levels are also expected to provide other factors that would reduce the rate of accidents on the Nigerian roads; such as providing good road networks, using engineering designs that will make vehicle driving more convenient, and the making ever ending efforts in drivers sensitization programmes and education.
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