LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)-Malawi Police at Lingadzi station in the Capital City of Lilongwe are worried over an increase of 165% in road accidents in the city.
Statistics show that between the period of January to June 2019, the station registered 155 cases compared to 412 cases registered in 2020 for the same period which represents an increase of 165 percent.
Research shows that 95% of accidents are minor and damages only which are mostly caused due to use of cellphones whilst driving. In most cases, drivers forget that they are on the road by driving recklessly since they are always busy on phone as a result accidents occur.
Lingadzi Police station spokesperson Salomy Zgambo says apart from use of cellphones, other contributing factors for increase in road accidents are over speeding, traffic congestion and poor road infrastructure.
Zgambo observes; “It has been noted with total dismay that due to Covid-19 pandemic, most people do not report for work and the road are somehow not congested which makes drivers forget about road signs and cruise to the maximum of speed limit resulting into causing accidents.
“In addition to that, road diversions have also contributed to road accidents in the sense that most drivers discover the diversions when they are too close, hence fail to control their vehicles”.
She added, “Police have put several measures in reducing road accidents, such as intensifying traffic checks and patrols. However, there are some challenges that police is facing due to Covid-19.
“For instance, the use of breathalyzers have been stopped due to Covid-19 making drunkards to drive freely without being checked and at the end they cause accidents”.
In addition to that, police manpower has been reduced and officers are working in shifts as one way of observing preventative measures prior to Covid-19. This has also forced police to reduce traffic checks.
“Police is therefore advising all road users to more especially drivers to monitor road signs so that together we can reduce road accidents,” urges Zgambo.