New highway code on the cards

11 Feb, 2017 - 00:02 0 Views
New highway code on the cards Dr Joram Gumbo

The Chronicle

Minister Joram Gumbo

Minister Joram Gumbo

Mashudu Netsianda, Senior Reporter
THE Government is set to introduce a new Highway Code next month as part of ongoing efforts to enhance road safety and reduce accidents on the country’s roads.

Transport and Infrastructure Development Minister Dr Joram Gumbo on Wednesday told Parliament that the upgraded Highway Code embraces traffic signs in the Sadc region. “An upgraded Highway Code encompassing Sadc signs is set to be launched on 30 March, 2017. I urge Members of Parliament and the public to familiarise themselves with the contents of the code,” he said.

The Minister said Government has, in line with Sadc harmonisation of standards for testing drivers, started constructing at all VID yards, Sadc standard hill starts, three-point-turn, parallel parking and reversing facilities.

“The system entails that learner drivers who would have come for a road test, pick a ball from a basket with an office number leading them to the examiner who will take them for the test.

“This strategy is envisaged to counter a pre-arranged corrupt choice of an examiner for the practical tests,” he said.

Dr Gumbo said plans were also underway to introduce road safety education into school syllabi.

“A comprehensive road safety document has been submitted to the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education’s Curriculum Development Unit (CDU) for consideration with a view to including road safety education into the school curriculum,” he said.

Dr Gumbo said his ministry through the Zimbabwe Traffic Safety Council carries out continuous road safety awareness campaigns targeting children in schools, Junior Parliament, chiefs, headmen, and village heads.

“The Traffic Safety Council also conducts training in defensive driving for both public service vehicles and private drivers all in a bid to reduce carnage on our roads,” he said.

The Minister said some accidents were caused by poor road signage and lack of carriageway markings.

“There is a huge backlog on carriageway markings and general signage on our roads. Regrettably, most road signs have been vandalised and we are acutely aware of the contribution this has had on accidents on our roads,” he said.

Dr Gumbo said the rehabilitation and replacement of road signage requires a huge budget and urged people to report any acts of vandalism.

He said retests for public service vehicle drivers have seen a reduction in loss of lives and property.

The Minister said his Ministry has a zero tolerance policy to corruption in line with the aspirations of Zim-Asset.

— @mashnets

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