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Passengers contribute to accidents on highways: FRSC

The Federal Road Safety Corps has said that the culture of passengers keeping mute when commercial drivers “gamble” with their lives is a contributing factor to a spate of road crashes.

“Unfortunately, most passengers are passive while onboard commercial vehicles, keeping quiet even when drivers glaringly ‘gamble’ with their lives,” the sector commander of FRSC in Kaduna, Hafiz Muhammad, said on Saturday.

Speaking during an interview, Mr Muhammad expressed worries over constant road crashes, attributing them to drivers’ recklessness.

“There are road traffic crashes resulting from drivers carelessness or recklessness such as overloading, over-speeding, and overtaking in sharp bends, among others.”

He noted that it was the responsibility of passengers to caution drivers when the need arises.

“It behoves on the passengers in the vehicle to call the driver to order if, for example, he is speeding beyond a prescribed limit of a particular road, overtaking dangerously, and engaging in other acts of reckless driving.

Mr Muhammad explained that by doing so, passengers are assisting the driver to ensure their safety on the highway.

He lamented that most times, passengers adopted a passive attitude, and worst still, vented their spleen on few who tried to bring such erring drivers to order.

“I do not see any rationale behind passengers in a vehicle seeing a driver compromising their safety, yet they cannot caution him,” he fumed.

Mr Muhammad expressed optimism that if the majority of passengers were to play their roles while on transit, there would be a drastic reduction in automobile accidents on the highways.

He said while authorities vested with the responsibility of ensuring safety on the highways were doing their best, their efforts must be complemented as they could not be everywhere at all times.

“The offenders we penalise are the ones we see and apprehend in the course of the act; most of the violations are committed in the ‘absence’ of road traffic rules enforcers, but in the full ‘glare’ of passengers.

“Although the passengers may not be Special Marshalls of FRSC, they can play that role through ‘collective driving’ while on transit, to guarantee their safety,” he admonished.

Mr Muhammad’s advice comes barely two days after a ghastly automobile accident on a highway in Bagauda village of Kano State that claimed 19 lives.

(NAN)

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