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NOIPolls has released its Safety of Nigerian Roads Poll conducted in May 2013, saying that Nigerian roads are unsafe.
The poll result, which was obtained by THISDAY, revealed that about 7 in 10 Nigerians (71 per cent) are of the opinion that Nigerians roads are unsafe. Similarly, about 8 in 10 Nigerians (82 per cent) believe that bad roads, followed by reckless driving (73 per cent), are mainly responsible for the spate of accidents on Nigerian roads.
According to the poll result, Nigerians opined that the government can make the roads safer by fixing the bad roads and empowering relevant agencies such as the Federal Roads Safety Commission (FRSC) and the Vehicle Inspection Officers (VIO) to carry out their duties effectively.
It also said “since we are in the middle of the period generally regarded as the “ember” months, there is need for increased media campaign and sensitisation in this season to encourage safe driving.
“In Nigeria, the last 4 months of the year are often referred to as ‘ember months’ and have been greatly associated with increased incidence of road accidents and casualty. Due to the festivities in these months particularly in December, there is an upsurge in movement of people travelling to various destinations, thus increasing the traffic on the roads.
“Consequently, more road accidents and the resulting casualty have been recorded during this period in the past. For instance in January 2013, The Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), recorded 280 deaths from 480 road accidents between December 19, 2012 and January 3, 2013.
“Several reasons have been presented by the FRSC and general public as the causes of increased occurrences of road accidents and death on the roads within these months. Some of these include the increased numbers of road users and vehicles on the roads, the lack of proper implementation of traffic safety regulation such as roadworthiness tests and driver licensing, as well as bad condition of some Nigerian roads.
“Furthermore, bad habits such as overloading, speeding, drunk driving, use of cell phones while driving and dangerous driving have been identified by the FRSC as significant preventable causes of road accidents and deaths on Nigerian roads during these months. Thus, FRSC has been known to increase road safety campaigns, sensitisation, patrol and road law enforcement during this season”, it added.
NOIPolls, which prides itself as the number one country-specific polling services in West Africa, said the poll explored the perceptions of Nigerians on the level of safety on roads, causes of road accidents as well as remedies for reducing road accidents.
According to it, respondents were asked five specific questions. The first question sought to establish the perception of Nigerians regarding the safety of roads? Respondents were asked: In your opinion, how safe are the roads in Nigeria? Overall, majority of the respondents (71 per cent in total) were of the opinion that the roads in Nigeria are unsafe; with 58 per cent who thought the roads are “somewhat unsafe” and 13 per cent who think they are “very unsafe”.
On the other hand, only 13 per cent in total think the roads in Nigeria are safe, with 12 per cent who thought they are “somewhat safe”, while only 1 per cent thought they are “very safe”. Furthermore, 16 per cent were neutral and thought Nigerian roads are ‘neither safe nor unsafe’.