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The Ghana Private Road Transport Union (GPRTU) and all other commercial transport operators have been asked to appoint road safety officers as provided for by the Standards for Commercial Passenger Transport Operators.
The Management of the Metro Mass Transit (MMT), GPRTU and all other commercial passenger transport operators should liaise with the National Drivers Academy to put in place a programme to offer road safety refresher training programme in the manner provided for under Regulation 125 of Road Traffic Regulations L.I. 2180 2012 for all their drivers.
The call was made by the National Road Safety Commission (NRSC) in a statement issued to the Ghana News Agency, on Friday in Accra.
It said that the agencies with responsibility to ensure compliance with existing operational safety standards, considered transport operators as frontline enforcement.
The statement said the NRSC was distressed by the safety profile of the commercial passenger transport operators, particularly the GPRTU and MMT as leading public service transport operators with responsibility to reflect a higher road safety standard.
According to the statement, “It is regrettable that over the last three years alone, the GPRTU and MMT have been involved in a number of crashes that includes some notable high casualty crashes killing a total of 97 persons.
“In August 2010, 19 persons perished in a crash at Sege when a MMT bus ran into a stationary vehicle, while in November 2011, 29 persons died in Tamale in a crash involving vehicles operated by GPRTU and MMT as a result of overloading and over speeding”.
The statement also said that in September 2012, a MMT operated vehicle hit an Urvan commercial bus at Srokpo junction on the Tamale-Savelugu highway, killing 9 persons and during that same period, a MMT bus collided with a GPRTU operated Toyota Haise bus at Bepoase, near Adukrom, in the Eastern Region, killing 9 persons.
The statement expressed worry that in November 2012, some 31 persons have been confirmed dead in a crash involving vehicles managed by MMMT and GPRTU.
The statement said following the road traffic crash that occurred on Friday November 16, 2012, the Executive Director of the NRSC, Mr Noble John Appiah, led a team to visit the scene to ascertain first- hand information on the nature of accident.
It directed MMT, GPRTU and all transport operators providing service in the nature of commercial passenger transport service to submit to the Commission within two weeks from November 21, 2012 a list of road safety officers appointed and a detailed action plan for the implementation of the standards and the refresher training for all their drivers.
It said the crash occurred at Kogni near Bawa Barracks on the Tamale-Bolgatanga Highway when a Bolgatanga bound MMT bus reportedly collided head on with a GPRTU-operated Benz bus.
The statement noted that ‘’preliminary investigations into the road traffic crash suggests a failure of the road transport operational system to comply with processes, procedures and road safety standards that guarantee quality assurance, given the state of the vehicles after the crash and the surrounding circumstances of the crash.’’