By SANDRA MACHIMA
REDUCING speed limits on Zambia’s roads is fundamental to reducing road danger and creating healthy streets where people want to walk, cycle and use public transport, says Zambia Safety Trust (ZRST) chairman Daniel Mwamba.
Mr Mwamba said the decisive unprecedented fundamental decision by the Minister of Transport and Communications, to limit speeds to 30 km/h in urban and school settings would save over 30,000 lives from death and serious injuries over a period of 5 years.
This follows a sustained campaign by the ZRST and the Lusaka Mayor, Miles Sampa, to have 30km/h limits in schools areas.
He has since appealed to all motorists to make a difference by slowing down to 30 km/h or below around homes, schools and shops, even where the limit was still 40 km/h.
Minister for Transport and Communications announced a raft of stiff measures to curb road carnage on Zambia’s roads that included signing an SI to limit speeds to 30 km/h and installation of safe infrastructure such us humps and signage in all schools areas and urban settings.
Mr Mwamba said more than 5000 people were seriously injured, hence the decision by government had a potential to save over 30,000 lives from permanent injuries or death over the next five years, if its backed up by serious enforcement.
This he said, was an enlightened move by the Ministry of Transport and Communications, when it recognized that 30 km/h limits could enable people to get around their neighborhoods, towns and city centres more safely, sustainably and healthily.
“The Zambia Road Safety Trust have previously and consistently called for the government to introduce 30 km/h limits on We’re very pleased all school areas and urban settings will become 30 km/h. We hope this will happen as soon as possible, and that ultimately all citizens will be safe.
According to statistics analyzed by ZRST, in 2014, he said over 1500 children were involved in traffic accidents, leaving 340 killed, translating into almost 1 child killed per day.