201 people lost their lives in the 825 accident cases that were recorded in the Central Region from January to November 2018.
Provisional figures from the Central Regional office of the National Road Safety Commission (NRSC), indicate that 572 of those accidents involved commercial vehicles, while 253 were private cars.
The statistics also show that 1,321 suffered varying degrees of injury from the crashes.
Speaking to Citi News at the launch of the Christmas Road Safety Campaign in the Central Regional capital, Cape Coast, under the theme “Ekwanso Dwodwoo, Meye M’afemu Dzi,” [Safety on the road; I will do my part], the acting Central Regional Head of the NRSC, Linda Afotey Annan, said accidents could be prevented if Ghanaians translate their passion for safety into best road practices.
“We must all do our best to engage in best practices on our roads,” she added.
According to Ms. Annan, the NRSC is not only concerned with the high rate of road traffic crashes but also with how to reverse the situation.
“We need to always adopt and work with cost-effective, practical and result-oriented interventions and measures in the management of road safety in the region.”
The Deputy Commander at the Central Regional Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD), ASP Foster Gyasi, however stated that the recent figures show a decrease in the number of accident cases from the same period last year.
He said in 2017, a total of 902 accidents were recorded compared to 825 for 2018.
Although figures for the festive season were not yet in, he was optimistic that this year would be much better.
He was however quick to add that the number of individuals who died from hit-and-runs had increased from 180 in 2017 to 186 in 2018.
“This is a worrying trend and we must all come on board to help fight this canker,” ASP Foster Gyasi noted.
He also indicated that the number of individuals who got injured in the road accidents had risen from 1,427 in 2017 to 1,431 in 2018.
Mr. Eugene Kobina Tawiah, the Deputy Regional Manager for the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA), noted some factors that contribute to road accidents in the Central Region, including lack of concentration, which he said was a major cause.
He explained that a driver might start a quarrel with a fellow driver at the station before embarking on a journey and this might distract him while he is on the road.
Mr. Tawiah said over-confidence on the part of experienced drivers was also a contributory factor in some road accidents.
“These drivers tend to be overconfident and ignore minor road signs on the road as a result of their experience and the result is an accident.”
“Also 70% of road accidents on our roads are as a result of driver error.”
Eugene Tawiah mentioned that another major cause of road accidents is the presence of visibility challenges for some drivers.
“The toys we put in our cars have the tendency to block our view of not seeing the oncoming vehicle or in other situations even disrupt our attention and this is silently causing accidents on our roads,” Eugene Tawiah noted.