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Safety first on our roads urgently needs direction

WE have all been taught to accept that safety is first on our roads. In fact, it is the same everywhere outside Solomon Islands.

That Safety First is the number one priority when it comes to traffic police enforcing traffic rules.

We have had a fair share of ours. Lately though it seems Safety First on our roads has been thrown out the window. Road construction on the stretch between Fishing Village in the east and the Honiara City Council precinct on the west, has simply compounded the gridlock on our roads.

Police presence on the roads has been sporadic. It seems they only come to direct and control traffic flow when they need it. It should not be.

Lack of consistent police presence on our roads has prompted motorists to take advantage of the vacuum. In doing so, they have put many, many innocent lives at risk. Today buses and taxis roam free, creating a third lane on every section of the road. In doing so, they have consistently caused damages to pedestrian footpaths with near misses every day.

Why are motorists such as bus and taxi drivers hard to book for traffic infringements? Are we taking the western-style of doing things by doing nothing until something big happens before we rush to address the problem?

Late on Monday afternoon this week one of the heavy trucks was carrying a large earth moving machine along the main road. It was peak hour. That machine was fastened only by two strands of chains at the back. It was sitting precariously on the bed deck. It could easily slide onto the road with a potential to cause a carnage on our roads.

Why are these heavy trucks allowed on the main roads during peak hours? Surely, regulations should be enacted to stop using the main road during certain hours of the day. This is the practice in other countries.

Why not here?

Traffic police and Honiara City Council police should come up with something to restore Safety First on our roads. Safety First on our roads is a must.