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JIS News

With 41 persons already killed and several others maimed on the nation’s roads for 2006, the Police Traffic Division is preparing to roll out a number of initiatives to cut down on the carnage on the roadways.
In an interview with JIS News, Byron Powell, Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) in charge of administration at the Police Traffic Division, informed that over the last two years, road accidents and fatalities have been trending downward, and the Traffic Division intended to take the figures down even further.
In 2004, there were 309 accidents with 360 deaths, while in 2005, there were 286 accidents resulting in 326 deaths. For 2006, the Division has given itself the “ambitious” task of taking the number of general accidents down to sub-300, which should invariably lead to a reduction in fatalities, said DSP Powell.
“We are very ambitious and would want to take the number of fatalities down to around 250, which, at our current figures, would mean that we want to get the figure reduced by about 76,” he said.
To achieve this objective, the Deputy Superintendent said that the Police Traffic Division “will pull out all the stops.”
“We want to increase the number of motorcyclists that we have available for deployment so we are going to be doing some training. We plan to have at least three training cycles for this year,” he said, informing that one training cycle spanned 14 weeks; three weeks in the classroom, eight weeks on the motorcycle, and then a period of about three weeks for orientation.
An important component of this training and orientation, he explained, would involve “empowering the traffic officers to not only handle the motorcycles efficiently, but we will also teach them road policing skills and ensure that they are very conversant with the laws and regulations governing the use of the roads”.
The Police Traffic Division is also developing an aide-m