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EDITORIAL: Road Accidents – Are They Just A Result Of Speeding?

Whenever there is a road accident, whether a life is lost or just injuries caused, the first instinct by many people is that the driver must have been speeding. But
18 May 2015 08:13
EDITORIAL: Road Accidents – Are They Just A Result Of Speeding?

Whenever there is a road accident, whether a life is lost or just injuries caused, the first instinct by many people is that the driver must have been speeding.

But we fail to ask ourselves, what could have led to speeding?

The obvious one, of course, is if the driver could be someone who is reckless and has not even learned how to drive properly or is quite inexperienced.

But there are many other reasons – one being road rage and making a decision based on some other driver’s stupidity.

Now any driver would know that the national maximum speed in Fiji is 80km per hour and on the main highway. This is generally the speed everywhere, except most bends and villages.

So what happens when you come across a driver driving at the speed of 30km per hour in a 80km per hour zone?

The obvious thing is a long queue of traffic follows this vehicle.  But the next thing is, the other drivers start to get frustrated by this person driving way below the speed limit.

Frustration leads to road rage, which then leads to drivers overtaking in wrong places.  Now the lucky ones and the smart ones get away with overtaking. But the not so lucky ones are the ones who make it into our daily headlines and on Facebook.

So who is at fault?

The driver who got involved in an accident while trying to overtake someone driving way below the speed limit or the driver who was driving below the speed limited in the first place?

Courtesy – that is what is missing on our roads and if we have that then reducing the number of accidents will not seem so difficult anymore.

It is understandable that not everyone can drive fast, whether it is the driver fault or the vehicle capability.

So what should one do if they see the line of vehicles following them getting longer?

Everyone is in a hurry to reach their destination, but in this case, if you are someone who cannot drive as fast, why not just pull over and let the others pass you?  Then you can just continue with your journey and stop to make way for those who drive faster than you.

We are a developing nation and we do not have the luxuries of having highways with multi-lanes.

Government has allocated funds to improve the standard of our roads so we have to make do with what we have.

If your being courteous saves at least one life, that means we are headed in the right direction.

A calm and collected mind is much better than frustrated mind – especially on our roads.

So next time if you cannot keep up with the speed limit in a given area, why not just pull over and let others overtake as opposed to just trying to speed up and hog the road while other frustrated drivers try to overtake you.

Feedback:  rachnal@fijisun.com.fj

 




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