31 May 2016 21:10pm
WINDHOEK, 31 MAY (NAMPA) Although crash statistics present a picture of stabilisation, there is still a lot to be done to improve safety on Namibian roads, Minister of Works and Transport, Alpheus !Naruseb says.
He said this on Monday after two fatal road crashes between Usakos and Arandis on Sunday.
Seven people died in the two separate accidents on the same road, some three hours apart and not far from each other.
In a statement presented during a media conference on Monday, !Naruseb said preliminary results indicated that both crashes were caused by tyre bursts.
We need to be vigilant at all times, but most importantly, make sure that you inspect your vehicle before you undertake a journey no matter how short the journey is, he said.
In the first accident, a sedan with five occupants and a single cab pick-up carrying six people collided head-on. It is suspected that the rear left tyre of the sedan burst, causing the driver to lose control of the vehicle and leave the road.
The vehicle then drove on the gravel before it swung back onto the tar road, resulting in the collision with the pick-up. Five people perished.
It has been confirmed that the occupants of the sedan were all wearing seatbelts, thereby reducing the impact of injury and increasing the chances of survival, !Naruseb said.
In the second accident, two people died while six sustained injuries. Further details of the second accident were not provided but the minister noted that emergency medical officials were not available to attend to the crash immediately.
With the occurrence of the second crash, there was no sufficient emergency medical response services available to attend to the injured, because all service providers had conveyed the injured from the first crash to medical facilities for stabilisation and subsequently to Windhoek for further medical management.
He added that this is a concern and a situation that poses a huge risk to the nation in cases of calamities.
Namibia needs to fast-track the development of adequate emergency medical care centres at strategic locations to be able to not only attend to motor vehicle emergencies, but other calamities as well.