The Bono Regional Coordinating council (BRCC) has identified overloading as a major cause of road accidents at the Kobedi-Chiraa stretch of the Sunyani, Techiman highway despite it deplorable state.
BRCC is, however, mapping out strategies to combat drivers who load their trucks with lumbers above the stipulated height which is 4.5 metre.
At a stakeholder’s engagement to map out special operation to combat the menace, it was revealed that drivers take advantage of the absent of both Height Measuring check point and Axle Load check points at the road and load beyond the approve height.
It was also revealed that most of the frequent road accidents involving articulated trucks loaded with lumbers at Kobedi are mostly caused by imbalance due to the excessive loading.
The BRCC has, however, proposed that Height Measuring check point will soon be commissioned at the road for the interim to check overloading.
Height Measuring Sticks will be procured for a committee for the exercise, they will also engage all roads user in various mediums and platform especially those plying Chiraa road for frequent education.
Those at the meeting were representatives of Ghana Highway Authority, Urban Roads Department, Timber Contractors Association, Tipper Truck Drivers Association, and BRCC. Security service and GPRTU-Of TUC.
The Bono Regional Minister, Hon. Justina Owusu Banahene said the BRCC is committed to addressing the problem of road accidents in the region and will soon map out strategies to ensure that most entry point of the region has at least Height Measuring check point if not axle load check point.
She warned the drivers to desist from excessive loading in order to protect the lifespan of the roads.
Justina Owusu Banahene stated that her office will continue to liaise with authorities and agencies for more toll bridges to be constructed in the region to check overloading.
Regional Minister appealed to the drivers to comply with allowable Maximum Gross Weight of their vehicles.
The allowable height and breadth of vehicles are 4.5 and 3.5 respectively, however, drivers are to check the weight of their vehicles before loading.
She advised drivers to desist from overloading their trucks to avoid unnecessary accident, and urged them to acquire tape measures to ensure their load was measured before moving the vehicles.
Hon. Justina Owusu Banahene who initiated the dialogue told the participant that government has awarded some portion of the highway which includes the Kobedi stretch of the road to PMC Africa Ltd headed by Abdallah Ahmed-Abdallah (Alhaji PMC).
Hon. Regional Minister said the contractor is only waiting for rains to surceased then the work can start, adding that the contractor even move most of equipment meant for the work to the site.
Hon Justina Owusu Banahene also briefed the participant about the “controversial” New-Dormaa-Chiraa stretch, particularly the Kotokrom-Yawhima section of the road, she said the contractor working on the road, Sames Construction Limited, is currently on site but has temporally pause operation for the rains to go down. She said it was the consultant that stopped the contractor from asphalting the one side of the road until the rains stops.
Hon. Justina Owusu Banahene continued to plead with the people at the area and commuters using the stretch to continue to tolerate the work, the contractor and the government as the government is committed to not only make that road motorable but everlasting.
Bono Minister again appealed to Bono citizens in general to be patient with the government while it puts in appropriate measures to help address the many challenges confronting the region.
The Regional Traffic and Development Engineer of Urban Roads, Victoria Afriyie-Darkwa, lauded the initiatives and strategies put together by the BRCC to curb frequent accident at Chiraa road and it will go a long way to reduce those accident.
She said Urban roads is the key stakeholder so far as Chiraa road is concern, they also have a mandate to keep the road motorable always, therefore the strategy by the BRCC is very commendable and will do everything possible within their mandate to ensure that any work done at the road will stand at the test of time.
Mad. Afriyie -Darkwa insisted that the department will always go for good work with good materials that will produce quality output that is why in a rain season they ask the contractor to halt the work.
She also called on the resident at new-Dormaa, Kotokrom and Yawhima to continue to be patient because they want to give them quality road.
She said when the rains stops the contractor will start asphalting the road.