Auto crash: FRSC advocates investment in Vehicle Transit Areas project

 The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) has called for investment in the Vehicle Transit Areas (VTA) project to improve road safety, security of cargoes and reduce traffic crashes in the country.

The FRSC Corps Marshal, Dr Boboye Oyeyemi, said this at a VTAs South-East Sensitisation Rally, organised by the FRSC in collaboration with the Nigerian Shippers Council (NSC) on Thursday in Awka.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the theme of the programme is entitled “Vehicle Transit Areas: A Panacea for Crash- Free Haulage Operations in Nigeria.”

Oyeyemi, who was represented by Mr Hyginus Omeje, of the Federal Operations, described VTA as a public rest area located off the road, designed to provide temporary rest location for drivers.

“Road crashes, especially when it involves tankers or articulated vehicles, are usually fatal because lives, cargos and properties worth billions of naira are lost.

“We have discovered that fatigue resulting from mental and physical exertion on the part of the drivers is one of the major reasons for these crashes.

“After every four hours, drivers are supposed to park to check the vehicle, relax for 15 minutes and take refreshment to help blood circulation in the body and the brain.

“This 15 minutes rest will help the driver to be in the right frame of mind and concentrate while driving.

“This can be achieved if we have designated standard and attractive VTAs, with amenities such as mechanic workshop, restaurants, toilets, bathrooms, gas or fuel station, fire station, police post, health clinic, lounge among others,” he said.

Oyeyemi said that locations across the country had been identified in collaboration with critical stakeholders in the transport sector and would be implemented on the Public-Private Partnership model.

He urged state governments, corporate organisations and well-meaning individuals to invest in the VTAs project, as it would create employment and guarantee return on investment.

Also speaking, Mr Hassan Bello, NSC Executive Secretary, said the council was involved in the initiation of the VTAs project to promote safety and security of cargos in the country.

Bello, who was represented by Rev. Winner Anayo, South-East Zonal Director of NSC, said sensitisation was necessary to help truck, tanker and trailer drivers as well as other stakeholders appreciate the need for the VTAs.

Prof. Solo Chukwulobelu, Secretary to the Anambra State Government, said that a piece of land located off the expressway by Enugu-Ukwu bypass in Njikoka Local Government Area, had been allocated for the VTA project in the state.

Chukwulobelu urged transport unions to ensure constant training and monitoring of their drivers to prevent incessant auto crash.

He also commended the FRSC and the NSC for organising the event and prioritising safe motoring environment in the state. (NAN)