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Matatu Sacco to train drivers on road safety

The management of the 2NK matatu Sacco has started re-training its drivers on road safety, ahead of the Christmas and New Year festivities.

According to the Sacco’s chairman, James Kahiro, the road safety seminars are preventive measures to help the fleet of Public Service Vehicles under the Sacco’s management curb road accidents that mostly occur during the holiday season.

Kahiro also said that all the over 800 drivers affiliated to the Sacco are set to undergo an awareness seminar on the dangers of drunk driving, high speeding and overworking during the busy period, among other issues.

“We have taken measures now that we are heading to the Christmas festivities when most accidents happen. Our drivers are being sensitized on the need to be careful when transporting passengers from one point to another. We are also training them on a number of things that lead to accidents and how to avoid them with the hope of having a peaceful, accident-free festive season,” said Kahiro.

The Sacco chairman also allayed fears that they would hike transport charges during the December festivities.

He said despite the high fuel prices, the PSV operators would ensure that their customers are able to travel upcountry for holidays.

“We have always been lenient on fares all through more so during a time like this. Given that the fuel prices have consistently been on the rise, I would like to reassure our customers that there is no way we will hike the fares to a point where they will not be able to travel. The fares will be commensurate with the cost of petrol,” said Kahiro.

The 2NK chairman was speaking during the World Remembrance Day at the Whispers Park in Nyeri. The day is marked globally on the third Sunday of November. It is a day set aside to remember those killed or seriously injured in road accidents.

In Nyeri County, NTSA together with the county government marked the day by providing free diabetes and hypertension checks to PSV drivers and their conductors at the three matatu terminus in Nyeri town.

The agency also conducted speed governor inspections with the Central Region NTSA manager, Bora Guyo saying that they would intensify the checks in the coming days.

“We will continue to inspect the speed governors and recommend the necessary action to the drivers. My appeal to the road users is to be more careful especially now that we are approaching the festive season where there will be so much movement to the rural areas,” said Guyo.

As of November 14, NTSA had recorded 18,361 accident victims. From the figures, 4,077 were fatal accidents. NTSA says that 1,474 of those who died were pedestrians while 719 were passengers. The data also shows that, 370 of those who perished were pillion passengers.

According to the report, boda boda riders recorded the highest number of deaths at 1,032 during the year under review, while the country had lost 373 drivers and 56 cyclists as of mid-November this year.

Speeding, reckless driving, dangerous overtaking, drunk walking, failure to wear helmet by riders and failure to use designated pedestrian walkways were identified as the highest contributors to these crashes, according to the report.

By Wangari Mwangi and Rodah Ndirangu

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