AMA to start work on US$100,000 N1 road safety project

Mohammed Adjei Sowah – AMA boss

The Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) has scheduled Monday, September 17, 2018 to begin the La Paz Intersection Road Safety Enhancement work on the N1 highway, aimed at enhancing pedestrian safety.

The road safety enhancement work, being supported by the Ghana Highway Authority (GHA), Department of Urban Roads (DUR) and Bloomberg Initiative for Global Road Safety (BIGRS) under their partnership for Public Health Cities programme, is expected to be completed within 68 working days.

The B&FT understands that the entire project is being undertaken at a cost of US$100,000.

According to a press statement copied to the B&FT, the works earmarked include: increasing the pedestrian signal timing; lowering kerbs at places where pedestrians cross; remarking pedestrian crossings and other pavement markings.

Others are: narrowing lane widths; widening the median refuge; and replacing damaged signals and crash barriers.

The AMA said the intervention follows safety inspections it had carried out on the highway as part of efforts to enhance pedestrian safety and improve safety of other road users at the intersection.

It urged all road users commuting through the La Paz intersection on the N1 Highway and its immediate surroundings to cooperate with workmen as they work to improve road safety at the intersection.

Road crashes remain one of the leading causes of serious injuries and death in Accra. Data from the police show that from 2011 to 2015, 70% of the road traffic fatalities in the Accra Metropolitan Area were pedestrians. And about 15% of all road fatalities in the Accra Metropolitan Area occurred on the N1 corridor.

To reduce the high rate of fatalities and serious injuries, safety inspections were carried out by AMA-BIGRS which reviewed six high-frequency crash locations on the N1 – including the La Paz intersection.

Data collected by the AMA-BIGRS team suggests that at least 11,130 pedestrians were counted within an hour at this junction. On average, 16,972 pedestrians were counted in an hour.

Within the 12-hour period of data collection, as many as 203,661 pedestrian activities were registered – with vehicles travelling at speeds ranging from 90 to 120 km/h on the corridor.

This has resulted in frequent pedestrian knock-downs with their accompanying devastating fatalities and serious injuries.

The ground-breaking ceremony for road safety enhancement work commenced in July 2018, and AMA boss Mohammed Adjei Sowah has stated that they will continue to work with the National Road Safety Commission, Bloomberg Philanthropies and all partners under this initiative as well the road agencies to deploy proven solutions that save lives and improve environments where people live, work and play.

About the AMA-BIGRS

The Accra Metropolitan Assembly, in partnership with the Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety (AMA-BIGRS), has implemented evidence-based road safety interventions to reduce road injuries and deaths in Accra since 2015.

BIGRS is a five-year initiative supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies. Accra is one of the 10 cities worldwide selected to participate in this initiative.

AMA-BIGRS has four components: safer streets and mobility; enforcement; mass media and communication; and road safety surveillance. A number of activities and interventions have been undertaken under these four components since 2015.

These include road assessments to guide recommendations for safer roads; launch and continuous implementation of the pedestrian safety action plan; formation of a task force comprising the Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) of the Ghana Police Service and City Metropolitan Guards’ and road safety campaigns to clamp down on drunk-driving during festive occasions.