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Road Safety Situation in Uganda

Road Safety Situation in Uganda

Intoduction

Road transport is the dominant mode of transport in Uganda as road transport carries about 95% of the country’s goods traffic and about 99% of passenger traffic. However, the road safety situation in Uganda has deteriorated rapidly over the last years, mainly due to the growing vehicle population and the lack of appropriate road safety interventions from the regulatory authorities. Additionally, over 90 percent of the vehicles imported in Uganda are second hand and there is no clear mechanism to inspect vehicles on a regular basis. The high number of road accidents in major urban areas is also due to the rapid increase in the use of commercial motorcycles- Boda Bodas. According to the Uganda Police majority of the road accidents in Kampala are due to the use of commercial motorcycles.

The major causes of accidents

  • Human error which accounts for about 80% of the road traffic crashes.
  • Defective vehicle condition which accounts for about 10%
  • Road condition which also accounts for about 5%
  • Environment factors which account for about 5%

Road Safety interventions

  • Education of the public and drivers on road signs
  • Engineering through making road sector one of the key priorities and road markings and signs. The regulatory authorities are also ensuring the vehicles are road worthy.
  • Legislation and enforcement through the use of speed guns, breathalyzers, increased personnel and traffic control vehicles have gone a long way to reduce speeds and race of carnage on our roads. A number of traffic regulations have been formulated and gazetted.

Challenges

  • A road safety policy and strategy are not yet in place
  • Inadequate funding/manpower for road safety activities
  • National Road Safety Council and Transport Licensing Board are weak in terms of human resources and other logistics
  • Weak enforcement of existing laws and regulations
  • Resistance to enforcement of the laws and regulations mainly from pressure groups e.g. transport operators
  • Insufficient data on road accidents
  • Limited safety education as it has to be continuous and cover the entire country
  • Inadequate rescue services/victim care facilities
  • The importation of second hand vehicles.

Future plans by Government to enhance safety on the roads

  • Continue to collaborate with regional and international organizations in activities geared at improving road safety
  • Institute more regulations intended to improve road safety
  • Creation of a National Road Safety Authority to Enhance Road Safety
  • Safety Education and Publicity
  • Creation of road safety data base
  • Pre – registration inspection of Motor Vehicles
  • National Road Safety Policy and Strategy
  • Improvement of Road Infrastructure Safety
  • Promote Private Sector road safety initiatives