Nigerian Medical Association, NMA, Kaduna State chapter, has called on the Federal and Kaduna State governments including agencies saddled with the responsibility of ensuring the safety of lives on the country’s highways to expedite action to end the needless loss of lives on the Kaduna-Zaria road.
NMA observed that since the commencement of the reconstruction of the road and subsequent blockade and road diversion, it has led to increased road traffic accidents and impacted negatively on the already overstretched accident and emergency services in the hospitals.
Addressing newsman in Kaduna Thursday, state chairman of the chapter, Dr. Stephen Akau Kache said, “It is important to note that many travellers along this road suffer untold hardship and are exposed to enormous risks due to the blockade and several diversions on certain sections of the road, this, in turn, has resulted in loss of man-hours and several accidents have occurred with varying degrees of injuries and deaths occurring as a result. The most recent of which happened on Monday, 10th June 2019, in which several people were either injured or lost their lives which led to the death of Professor Adeola Abosede Orogade from the Department of Paediatric, Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital, Zaria.”
The Nigerian Medical Association called on government among others to declare a state of emergency on the Kaduna-Zaria expressway, pointing out that by doing so, they must deploy a joint task force of security operatives on the road to ensure strict adherence to traffic laws.
It added that there is the need to deploy cranes and other equipment at strategic locations along the road that could be used to extract victims who are trapped in vehicles as well as establish emergency medical units in strategic locations along the road.
The association noted that the government should prevail on the contractors to adequately mobilize and complete the road construction.
In the interim, to curb road accidents, NMA suggested that a number of diversions on the road should be minimized to one at a time and by extension, the repair of the road should be done in shorter segments.
“Temporary rumble strips (speed breakers) should be the vehicles while on that portion of the road. Set up mobile courts to try and prosecute traffic offenders,” NMA advised.
It said, “We believe that the reconstruction of the road is a laudable initiative and all efforts must be put in place to ensure the safety of lives plying the road.”