FRSC moves to tackle fuel tanker crashes, organises summit on haulage operations

Posted by News Express | 14 June 2015 | 3,210 times

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The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) is organising a summit to tackle the challenges of haulage operations in Nigeria.

This comes against the background of the recent spate of crashes involving petroleum tankers in parts of the country and the need to stabilise the situation towards ensuring safer road environment.

The programme, which is scheduled to hold tomorrow, June 15, at Shehu Musa Yar’adua Centre in Abuja, is expected to attract haulage operators, executive and members of road transport unions, experts on road transportation safety as well as stakeholders from the various road transportation groups in the country.

According to the Corps Marshal of the FRSC, Boboye Oyeyemi, the forum is in continuation of the ongoing consultation and collaboration with the various road transport unions in the country in the collective efforts to make the nation’s roads safer for all.

He pointed out that though FRSC has always been engaging the stakeholders in matters of road safety, the unfortunate incidents of last two weeks when the nation witnessed fatal crashes involving petroleum tankers in Anambra and Lagos States with loss of many lives and destruction of valuable property, made it imperative that advocacy programme be urgently stepped up to address the menace.

“When we saw early signs of increased rate of road fatalities after concluding our end of year special patrol for last year, the FRSC Management raised an alarm. As part of the strategies we put in place on how to avert re-occurrence, was the involvement of the leadership of the road transport unions in the advocacy programmes.

“In the course of my visits to them, therefore, we resolved to organise Mega Rallies across the country to sensitise the drivers and members of the public on issues of road safety,” he stated.

Speaking further, Oyeyemi disclosed that the maiden edition of the sensitisation programme was held in Ojota Motor Park, Lagos on 30th April 2015, while subsequent ones were held in Abeokuta and Kaduna respectively.

“Our plans were to stage the rallies across the country. But the sudden rinse in petroleum tanker crashes made it imperative that we urgently bring all stakeholders together to brainstorm on the menace, with a view to finding common and enforceable solutions,” he further stated.

While expressing dismay at the two incidents he described as “unfortunate,” the Corps Marshal stated that FRSC in collaboration with the leadership of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW); National Association of Road Transport Owners (NARTO);  Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) as well as Petroleum Tanker Drivers (PTD and the rest had earlier mapped out strategies on how to deal with the menace of road traffic crashes in the country.

He added that the summit was packaged to deal with the current challenges of haulage operations and mapping out strategies on how to counter the challenges of perennial tanker crashes.

The Corps Marshal pointed out that the basic idea behind the summit is to create platform for road transport stakeholders to exchange views on the current crash situations in the country and proffer solutions to them.

“The summit will particularly deal with how to transport petroleum products most safely across the country in the absence of alternative means of transportation,” he stated.

“It would also look at issues of monitoring, checking and enforcing safety standards on tankers and trailers as well as how to sustain collaboration with relevant stakeholders on issues of public sensitisation and ensuring minimum safety standards in articulated vehicles.

“Participants would look at issues of training and retraining of drivers, especially those of articulated vehicles and need to observe due process in the acquisition of driver’s licence, review the challenges of underage driving and prosecution of erring drivers to serve as deterrence to others,” he added.

Oyeyemi expressed optimism that with the active participation of relevant stakeholders in the summit, coupled with the anticipated public awareness that would be created, the Federal Government will be interested in the resolutions that would come and would act promptly on them.

“I have no doubt that the Federal Government will act promptly on the resolutions reached at the end of the summit, because it is interested in restoring safety and public confidence in haulage operations in the country,” he further stated.

•Photo shows Corps Marshal Boboye Oyeyemi.

Source: News Express

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