Safety Tips and Facts

ALCOHOL IMPAIRS YOUR DRIVING

  • The driver in an alcohol related crash is not the only one who suffers.
  • Often innocent pedestrians, cyclists, passengers or other road users are killed or seriously injured in a crash.
  • At half the legal limit you are twice as likely to have a crash. If driving at the legal limit, you are Six Times more likely to be in a crash.
  • Regardless of the amount you drink, even if it’s just One Pint or a Glass of Wine, which is equivalent to the current legal limit, just one alcoholic drink will impair your driving.
  • If you have just one drink and are still within the legal limit, you are still not safe to drive.

KEY FACTS ON MOBILE PHONE DISTRACTION

  • Using a mobile phone while driving can impair a driver’s visual search patterns, reaction times, decision making processes and their ability to maintain speed, safe following distances, throttle control and lateral position on the road.
  • The risk of being involved in a collision is four times higher when using a mobile phone than when not using one.
  • Using a hands-free phone while driving can be just as dangerous, as it too causes distraction and takes away from the primary responsibilities that the driver has while driving.

 

PEDESTRIANS ARE ALSO ROAD USERS

  • When crossing the road look left, right and left again and keep looking for cars as you cross.
  • See and be seen, walk while facing traffic.
  • Be alert when crossing the road.
  • Pedestrians should not walk in the street while under the influence of alcohol or other substances.
  • Don’t use cell phones or any other hand held gadgets that distract attention.
  • Don’t run while crossing the street.
  • Small children should cross the road/street with the assistance of parents/guardians or an elder.
  • Light coloured clothing with reflective properties is the safest option for pedestrians, especially at night.

 

SEATBELTS SAVE LIVES

                             

  • It is a proven fact that seatbelts save lives, and considerably reduce the injuries suffered by a casualty in a collision, if they are wearing a seatbelt.
  • In fact, passengers in the back are probably more at risk than those in the front since almost 60 percent of cars are not fully fitted with airbag systems for these passengers.
  • In a crash at 50km per hour, if you are unrestrained, you will be thrown forward and hit the front seat, and anyone in it with a force of between 30 and 60 times your own body weight. An impact such as this could prove serious or worst still fatal, for both you and the person you hit.
  • If you know this and are still not wearing a safety belt, you may need to ask yourself why not.

ROAD WORTHINESS

  • A well-maintained vehicle is a safe one.
  • All motor vehicles in Namibia must be registered and properly maintained for safety reasons.
  • It is illegal to drive a motor vehicle which is not road worthy or is in a bad or dangerous condition.
  • Keeping your vehicle in good shape will also reduce the amount of fuel it uses and increases its resale value. It also helps to protect the environment.
  • Remember, an authorised officer can examine your vehicle, its equipment and any trailer attached to it, at any time. If the vehicle is found to be unsafe, it may be taken off the road until the problem is fixed. You can be fined if you refuse to allow your vehicle to be inspected or if your vehicle is then found to be unsafe.

 

SPEEDING IS A FACTOR IN ONE THIRD OF ROAD TRAFFIC COLLISIONS

  • Speeding and reckless driving consistently feature as one of the main areas of local concern within communities. Reducing the number of serious injuries and fatalities that occur on the roads is a responsibility we all share and local communities can play an essential part in reducing the carnage on our road.
  • This essential step of reducing road accidents in Namibia starts with each citizen whether they are passengers or drivers.
  • The results of speeding not only affect the speedsters but also have adverse effects on pedestrians, other road users and the road infrastructure as well.

 

FATIGUE IMPAIRS YOUR DRIVING

All drivers have to be alert behind the wheel at all times. Unexpected events on the road, like a pedestrian crossing the road without looking out for traffic or a vehicle slamming on brakes right in front of you without any warning, needs quick thinking and fast reaction – something you cannot do when you are tired!

 

How to combat driver fatigue:

  • A driver should be allowed to stop for a 10 minute rest after each 2 to 4 hour driving period.
  • Always get a good night’s sleep before you drive.
  • Don’t drive when you are tired – choose a safe place to stop and REST!
  • Make sure you get plenty of fresh air while you drive.
  • Don’t depend on coffee or drugs to keep you awake.
  • Keep your eyes moving, by regularly checking your mirrors, speed and the road ahead.
  • In winter, don’t drive with the heater blowing in your face – it will make you sleepy.
  • Don’t drive with the cab light on – it strains your eyes and distorts your vision.
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