NRSA, others to develop standards on road safety ……following passage of Road Safety bill

The National Road Safety Authority (NRSA) is expected to collaborate with the Building and Road Research Institute and regulatory bodies responsible for road transport, the Standards Authority, and other bodies with relevant knowledge and expertise on road safety to develop standards for road safety equipment and ensure compliance with the standards.

According to the bill accompanying the report, the NRSA will issue notices in the form of directives, procedures or cautions to persons in providing for or correcting irregularity in procedures, standards, practices and operations in order to prevent or minimise road traffic crashes, fatalities and injuries.

Parliament on Tuesday passed the National Road Safety Authority bill 2019 – to establish a National Road Safety Authority that develops and promotes road safety in the country; coordinates and regulates activities, procedures and standards related to road safety, and provides for related matters.

The Authority’s objective is to reduce the incidence of road crashes, fatalities and injuries through the promotion of road safety, development and coordination of policies in relation to road safety, and the implementation of standards for road safety.

Furthermore, the Authority is to develop a long-term plan for the promotion of road safety and reduction of road traffic deaths and injuries, and collaborate with the Driver and Vehicle Licencing Authority, road agencies, enforcement agencies, crash response agencies, and road transport service providers to implement the plan.

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It will also undertake nationwide road safety education, campaigns and publicity; collaborate with the Ghana Education Service and other relevant bodies to develop road safety education as part of the curriculum for pre-tertiary level schools and colleges of education; carry out special projects for the improvement of road safety; coordinate, monitor and evaluate road safety activities, programmes and strategies.

Additionally, the bill reveals that the NRSA will:

Develop and maintain a comprehensive database on road safety for the information of the public; promote studies, research, surveys and analysis for road safety improvement; publish reports and information relating to road safety; and ensure compliance with any laid-down road safety standards and procedures for the development, use and provision of any road safety-related infrastructure, service or undertaking.

It will also recommend to the minister the minimum standards and guidelines for the safe use of roads by all categories of road users that the Authority may consider necessary; establish the procedure for road safety audit with the road authorities, and collaborate with the road agencies to ensure implementation of findings of road safety audits in accordance with existing design, construction and maintenance procedures and standards for the provision of road infrastructure;

Liaise with the Driver and Vehicle Licencing Authority, road agencies, enforcement agencies, District Assemblies and any other public or private bodies that the Authority may determine to ensure compliance with existing procedures and standards to reduce the risk of road traffic crashes in the design, construction and use of public roads;

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Receive complaints and investigate violations of road safety standards and best practices, and advise the minister on the measures required to prevent or minimise the road safety risks.

In consultation with the Minister, the NRSA will monitor the importation and sale of road safety equipment or devices for the safe use of roads collaborate with foreign and international bodies that the Authority considers necessary to achieve the object of this Act; and perform any other function that is necessary for attainment of the Authority’s objectives.

The National Road Safety Authority bill 2019: in the performance of the Authority’s functions under subsection (1), the Authority shall take into consideration the interest of the general public, and in particular the interests of property owners on adjoining roads.

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