Akin Akande, Abuja
As Islamic faithful across the country prepare for this year’s Eid-l-Kabir festival, the Federal Road Safety Corps, (FRSC) will today (Monday) commence a 5-day nationwide special patrol tagged ‘Operation Eid-el-Kabir.
The exercise is designed as a pro-active measure to check excesses in traffic so as to prevent road crashes and resultant losses in material and human resources during the festive period.
According to the Corps Public Education Officer, Corps Commander Jonas Agwu, the intensive special patrol would help to address some avoidable road crashes associated with increased traffic volume during celebration period like the Eid-l-kabir.
“The intensive special patrol is aimed at addressing the spate of avoidable road crashes usually associated with the surge of human and vehicular traffic across the country and is an all inclusive exercise which will witness intensive patrols, prompt rescue services, strict enforcement of traffic rules and robust public enlightenment campaigns across the nation,” he said in a statement issued in Abuja over the weekend.
“The aim of the special exercise include the removal of obstructions from the highways, traffic control/decongestion, public enlightenment campaigns through the distribution of safety handbills and other forms of awareness campaign in addition to strict enforcement of road traffic regulation infractions such as use of cell phone while driving, overloading, dangerous driving/overtaking, speed limit violation, failure to move over violations and other road vices,” he added.
“Consequent upon this, the Corps has embarked on massive deployment of personnel, patrol vehicles, motor bikes, tow trucks and ambulances along designated corridors and black spots within the Northern axis such as Yangoji, Lokoja, Akwanga, Jos, Mokwa, Bida, Potiskum, Bauchi, Lafia, Makurdi, Kaduna, Sokoto, Gombe and Kano in addition to the establishment of mobile courts at specific locations across the country for quick dispensation with road traffic offences” the Agwu said in the statement.
Speaking further on the Sallah special patrol, Commander Agwu said that the nationwide exercise ‘ forms part of the Corps’ sustained efforts to build a consistent tradition of enforcing traffic rules and regulations throughout the year to avoid a one-off approach to road safety management in Nigeria’.
He added that the 2013 Sallah patrol is a sign of the Corps intention to do all within its powers to ensure that zero road crash, injury and death are recorded throughout the period of the Ember season and yuletide.
According to the Agwu, ‘road traffic crashes are avoidable and only compliance with best practices of road use will guaranty the safety of all road users.’
Against this backdrop, he warned motorists to ensure strict compliance with all traffic rules and regulations and proper maintenance of vehicles, which ply the highways, as there would be no waiver for any traffic violations.
He equally enjoined commuters to monitor their drivers and to employ subtle approach to call them to order in the face of any form of reckless driving as any form of complacency may result to grave consequences.