Mr David Asante-Apeatu, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) on Tuesday disclosed that about 500 Ghanaians die every quarter as a result of road recklessness and called on all to help to end the menace.
He explained that road crashes, mostly caused by flouting drivers included; the abuse of siren and car horns that posed danger to unsuspecting road users.
Mr Asante-Apeatu who was addressing the media in Accra on abuse of siren, warned unauthorised users such as individuals and groups to desist from the practice. ”Anyone that flouts the laws will face a fine of GH¢3,000.00 or imprisonment of not less than 30 days or both,” the IGP added.
He charged his men to enforce the traffic regulations to the letter to reduce it to the barest minimum by increasing roadside checks, speed limit, among others.
Speaking on the use of siren, the IGP said, it was specifically used to clear way for limited number of vehicles including; vehicles for government officials, registered government security services, fire trucks, police vehicles, registered bullion vans and ambulances.
Mr Asante-Apeatu said private security services, hearses and top officials were not entitled to use sirens as they also contributed to the noise pollution Ghana was currently suffering from.
“Illegal mounting of siren brings discomfort to other road users and this annoyance and irritability to road users flout road safety rules,” he noted.
He warned unauthorised users to desist from it because the police Motor and Traffic Department in collaboration with the Complaint Unit of the Driver’s and Vehicles Licensing Authority (DVLA) would be more vigilant to enforce the law to the letter to bring offenders to book.
The IGP emphasised that the law was no respecter of persons and would deal accordingly to anyone or group of persons that contravened the law including; ministers of state, saying, they could call for police escort if there was the need.
However, he said, police would use its discretion in emergency situations but cautioned that no one should abuse the road regulations and pretend there was an emergency.
The IGP said it was a constitutional offence to toot horns unnecessarily and asked taxi drivers not to use that to solicit for passengers.
He called on the media, among other stakeholders to use their platforms to sensitise the public against the abuse of sirens and horns.
Mr Kwasi Agyemang Busia, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of DVLA said his organisation was poised to support the police to ensure sanity on the roads.
He said they would take-off any lights or unauthorised horns when vehicles were presented for registration or renewal as that contributed to road carnage, while Video cameras had been introduced on the roads to help capture unauthorised siren users.