By Bennie Mundando
OVER 1,600 people died from 28,484 road traffic accidents recorded in 2020 in Zambia which also left 4427 persons seriously injured.
Releasing the Annual Road Traffic Accident Statistics today, police spokesperson Esther Katongo said during the year 2020, a total number of 28,484 road traffic accidents were recorded, of which 1,404 were fatal road traffic accidents.
Ms. Katongo said 1, 690 persons were killed and that 2, 783 were serious road traffic accidents in which 4, 427 persons were seriously injured while 5,729 were slight injury road traffic accidents in which 8,190 persons were slightly injured and that18, 568 were recorded as ‘damage only’ road traffic accidents.
She said Lusaka Province recorded the highest number of road traffic accidents with 15,740, followed by Copperbelt with 4, 466 while Central had 2, 026 cases followed by Southern with 1, 455.
She said North-Western had 1,145, while Eastern had 1,079, followed by Luapula with 700. Muchinga had 631, while Western had 609 while Northern was the least with 502 road traffic accidents.
“In comparison with the year 2019, 30,648 road traffic accidents were recorded as compared to 28,484 road traffic accidents which were recorded in 2020. The figures show a reduction in road traffic accidents by 2,164.
“In 2019, 1462 were recorded as fatal road traffic accidents in which 1746 persons were killed as compared 1404 fatal road traffic accidents where 1690 persons were killed in 2020.The record shows a decrease in both fatal road traffic accidents by 58 and in persons killed by 56,” Ms. Katongo said.
“2940 were recorded as serious road traffic accidents in which 5012 persons were seriously injured in 2019 as compared to 2783 serious road traffic accidents where 4427 persons were seriously injured in 2020. The figures still show a decrease in serious road traffic accidents by 157 and in persons seriously injured by 585.
“5,713 were slight injury road traffic accidents in which 8,149 persons were slightly injured in 2019 as compared to 5,729 slight road traffic accidents where 8,190 persons were slightly injured in 2020. The figures show an increase in both slight road traffic accidents and in persons slightly injured by 16 and 41 respectively,” she said.
She said most of the accidents were attributed to human error with 4,432 accidents caused by excessive speed representing 15.6%. Misjudging clearance distance accounted for 4,186 representing 14.7% while failing to keep to near side accounted for 4,017 representing 14.1%.
She also said cutting in caused 2,305 accidents representing 8.1% while reversing negligently caused 1,981 accidents representing 6.9%
“According to data obtained from Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA) a cumulative motor vehicle volume has increased to 853,909. Last year a total number of 31,027 vehicles were imported and registered in the country. Despite, the increase in motor vehicle volume, the country has recorded a reduction in road carnage and this can be attributed to increased compliance levels by all road users which was as a result of enhanced stakeholder collaboration and increased Road safety awareness campaigns conducted through radio, Television and schools.
“The joint operations between the Zambia Police Service and Road Transport and Safety Agency (RTSA) during festive seasons and long holidays have also helped to reduce road traffic accidents.
Police will continue working in collaboration with all stakeholders to ensure the safety of the general public on roads. This will be done through community awareness programs and law enforcement which includes intensified patrols on public roads,” she said.