Track your Manuscript
Enter Correct Manuscript Reference Number:
Get Details
Top Editors

Dr. Nanjappaiah H. M.
Assoc. Prof. Dept. of Pharmacology BLDEA’s SSM College of Pharmacy & Research Centre Vijayapur – 586103, Karnataka, India

Dr. Shek Saleem Babu
English Language and Literature, English Language Teaching, and Poetry, IIIT, RGUKT, Nuzvid, Krishna Dt. AP, India

Dinh Tran Ngoc Huy
Bank for Investment and Development of VietNam (BIDV)

Dr. Abd El-Aleem Saad Soliman Desoky
Professor Assistant of Agricultural Zoology, Plant Protection Department Faculty of Agriculture, Sohag University - Egypt

Prof. Dr. Elsayed Ahmed Ahmed Elnashar, Ph.D.
Full-Professor of Textiles &Apparel, Faculty of Specific Education, Kaferelsheikh, University, Egypt
Top Reviewers

Dr. Shabnum Musaddiq
Assistant Professor, Department of Microbiology, Narayana Medical College, Nellore, Andhra Pradesh, India, 524003

Dr. Biman Kumar Panigrahi
Associate professor, Seemanta Instt. of Pharma. Scs., Jharpokharia, Odisha, 757086, India

Efanga, Udeme Okon
Finance, Accounting and Economics, niversity of Calabar, Nigeria

Aransi Waliyi Olayemi
Department of Adult Education, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria
Why Us
Open Access
Peer-reviewed
Rapid publication
Lifetime hosting
Free indexing service
Free promotion service
More citations
Search engine friendly
Go Back       Himalayan Journal of Education and Literature | Volume:3 Issue:4 | July 30, 2022
59 Downloads179 Views

DOI : 10.47310/Hjel.2022.v03i04.004       Download PDF       HTML       XML

Road Traffic Accident Occurrences on Nigerian Roads: “Unsafe at any Speed”


Atubi Augustus Orowhigo (Ph.D.)

Professor of Transportation Geography, Department of Geography and Regional Planning, Delta State University, Abraka, Nigeria

*Corresponding Author

Atubi Augustus Orowhigo (Ph.D.)


Article History

Received: 10.07.2022

Accepted: 20.07.2022

Published: 30.07.2022


Abstract: In Nigeria, road traffic crashes have become one of the leading causes of death in older children and economically active adults between the ages of 30 and 49 years. Despite this burgeoning problem, little attention has been paid to road traffic injury prevention and treatment in Nigeria and most developing countries. It has been observed that gross underestimation of road traffic accidents injuries and fatalities in Nigeria could be due to a lack of sufficient data collection by government agencies. The socio-economic cost of road traffic accidents and injuries in Nigeria are immense. The direct cost of traffic causalities can perhaps best be understood in terms of the labour lost to the nation’s economy which consequently results in low productivity. Road traffic accidents and injuries have significantly retorted Nigeria’s socio-economic aspirations and development due to the premature loss of qualified and potential contributing professionals and able – bodied men and women in the labour force.


Keywords: Accident; road; occurrences; unsafe; speed; Nigeria.


INTRODUCTION

Despite progress, road traffic deaths continue to rise, with an annual 1.35 million fatalities. Road traffic injuries are now the leading killer of children and young people aged 05-29 years. Globally of all road traffic deaths, pedestrians and cyclists account for 26% and motorcycle riders and passengers account for 28%. This risk of a road traffic death remains three times higher in low-income countries than in high-income countries, with rates highest in Africa (26.6 per 100,000 population). Every year, over 39,000 Nigerians die from road crashes. In the 2018 global status report on road safety, the World Health Organisation (WHO) estimated road traffic fatalities in Nigeria at 39,802, while deaths stood at 21.4 (WHO. 2018).


Road traffic accidents statistics in Nigeria reveal a serious and growing problem with absolute fatality rate and causality figure rising rapidly. The majority of developing countries, accident occurrence and released deaths are relative to either population or number of vehicles. Ironically, in Nigeria, studies have indicated that an increasing number of accidents (Onakomaiya, S. O. 1988; Gbadamosi, K. T. 2003; & Atubi, A. O., & Onokala, P. C. 2009) has accompanied better facilities in terms of good quality and standardised roads. This is contrary to the trends in countries where even the level of the sophisticated road network and the volume of vehicular traffic are higher (Atubi, A. O. 2010a; Atubi, A. O. 2015a). Nigeria loses about 80 billion naira annually to road accidents, of all subjects that are involved in road traffic accidents in Nigeria, 29.1 percent suffer disability, and 13.5 percent are unable to return to work (Labinjo, et al., 2010; Atubi, A. O. 2012a; Atubi, A. O. 2020a; & Atubi, A. O. 2020b).


According to the latest WHO data published in 2018; Road Traffic Accidents Deaths in Nigeria reached 40,061 or 2.07% of total deaths. The age adjusted death rate 29.50 per 100,000 of population ranks Nigeria 41 in the world (See Table 1).


Table 1: Road Traffic Accidents Death Rate per 100,000 (Age Standardized)

Rank

Country

Rate

Rank

Country

Rate

Rank

Country

Rate

1

Zimbabwe

61.90

62

Timor-Leste

23.56

123

Azerbaijan

10.35

2

Liberia

52.03

63

Gabon

23.47

124

Chile

10.23

3

Malawi

51.62

64

Botswana

23.44

125

Uzbekistan

9.67

4

Gambia

47.51

65

Malaysia

23.40

126

Bahamas

9.15

5

Togo

46.62

66

Viet Nam

23.21

127

Ukraine

8.87

6

Tanzania

46.17

67

Cambodia

23.14

128

Latvia

8.35

7

Rwanda

45.90

68

South Africa

22.44

129

Bahrain

8.17

8

Sao Tome

45.52

69

Tunisia

22.39

130

Turkey

8.17

9

Burkina Faso

44.94

70

Equatorial Guinea

21.81

131

Jamaica

8.15

10

Burundi

43.70

71

Mongolia

21.58

132

Moldova

8.07

11

Madagascar

42.67

72

Colombia

21.53

133

South Korea

7.98

12

Comoros

41.68

73

Myanmar

21.51

134

Romania

7.86

13

Senegal

41.54

74

Tajikistan

21.14

135

Poland

7.84

14

Venezuela

40.79

75

Iraq

20.93

136

Montenegro

7.80

15

Uganda

40.17

76

Nepal

20.70

137

Barbados

7.77

16

South Sudan

39.81

77

Brazil

20.18

138

Brunei

7.68

17

Kenya

39.63

78

Solomon Island

20.14

139

Grenada

7.42

18

Niger

39.13

79

Suriname

19.97

140

Greece

7.35

19

Mozambique

39.13

80

North Korea

19.91

141

Lithuania

7.08

20

Guinea

38.71

81

Morocco

19.87

142

Seychelles

7.07

21

Sierra Leone

38.68

82

Kyrgyzstan

19.10

143

Fiji

6.79

22

Eritrea

37.70

83

Guatemala

18.61

144

Croatia

6.73

23

Ghana

37.59

84

Lebanon

18.33

145

Bulgaria

6.57

24

Ethiopia

36.78

85

Turkmenistan

18.33

146

Tonga

6.44

25

Guinea-Bissau

36.71

86

El Salvador

18.30

147

Cuba

6.38

26

Benin

36.68

87

Indonesia

18.01

148

New Zealand

5.96

27

Mali

36.10

88

New Guinea

17.90

149

Slovakia

5.90

28

Dr Congo

35.98

89

China

17.73

150

Hungary

5.87

29

Cameroon

35.90

90

Afghanistan

17.68

151

Portugal

5.58

30

Somalia

35.36

91

Samoa

17.64

152

Serbia

5.51

31

Zambia

34.62

92

Laos

17.57

153

Belgium

5.45

32

Saudi Arabia

34.57

93

Honduras

17.36

154

Estonia

5.19

33

Mauritania

33.71

94

Guyana

17.29

155

Canada

5.17

34

Central Africa

32.34

95

Pakistan

17.12

156

Cyprus

5.07

35

Cote D Ivoire

31.42

96

Sri Lanka

16.37

157

No Macedonia

4.88

36

Chad

31.33

97

Trinidad/Tob.

16.37

158

Luxembourg

4.85

37

Thailand

30.24

98

Egypt

16.17

159

Slovenia

4.85

38

Djibouti

30.19

99

Vanuatu

16.16

160

Antigua/Bar.

4.71

39

Congo

29.87

100

Russia

15.93

161

Australia

4.62

40

Namibia

29.72

101

Haiti

15.47

162

Czech Republic

4.53

41

Nigeria

29.50

102

Nicaragua

15.42

163

Maldives

4.45

42

Iran

29.37

103

Bhutan

15.08

164

Austria

4.17

43

Lesotho

29.36

104

Arab emirates

15.01

165

France

4.02

44

Swaziland

29.04

105

Costa Rica

14.57

166

Italy

3.94

45

Yemen

29.03

106

Bangladesh

14.43

167

Finland

3.55

46

Oman

28.61

107

Qatar

14.23

168

Iceland

3.30

47

Libya

28.46

108

Saint Lucia

13.93

169

Germany

3.23

48

Dominican Rep.

27.85

109

Armenia

13.79

170

Micronesia

3.19

49

Jordan

27.46

110

Peru

13.73

171

Israel

3.11

50

Paraguay

27.07

111

Argentina

13.41

172

Ireland

3.01

51

Sudan

26.90

112

Uruguay

12.92

173

Singapore

2.87

52

Cape Verde

26.57

113

Albania

12.77

174

Spain

2.77

53

Algeria

25.11

114

Panama

12.50

175

Malta

2.72

54

Kazakhstan

25.09

115

Mexico

12.29

176

Denmark

2.60

55

Bolivia

24.97

116

Bosnia/Herzeg.

12.28

177

Netherlands

2.58

56

Ecuador

24.78

117

Mauritius

11.63

178

Norway

2.54

57

Angola

24.76

118

Philippines

11.40

179

United Kingdom

2.42

58

Syria

24.43

119

Georgia

11.02

180

Kiribati

2.40

59

Kuwait

24.00

120

United States

10.92

181

Switzerland

2.38

60

India

23.87

121

Belarus

10.65

182

Japan

2.37

61

Belize

23.68

122

Saint Vincent

10.47

183

Sweden

2.31

Source: WHO, 2018


One of the negative externalities of heavy reliance on road transportation as a means of movement of people and goods is road traffic accident (RTA). It is not an exaggeration to say that RTAs place an enormous financial burden, not only on families of victims, but also on society at large and the governments. It is from the foregoing perspective that inferences can be drawn to conclude that road traffic accidents affect economic growth in any given country such as Nigeria.


World Bank (2018), finds that reducing road traffic deaths and injuries could result in substantial long-term income gains for low and middle income countries. The report introduces a new methodology to calculate the economic impact of road safety and analyses. While there is general recognition of road traffic injuries and fatalities, little is known about the link between road traffic injuries and economic growth. The report quantifies how investments in road safety are also an investment in human capita. Countries that do not invest in road safety could miss out on anywhere between 7 and 22% in potential per capital GDP growth over a 24 year period. This requires policy makers to promise proven investment in road safety. The cost of in action is more than 1.25 million deaths a year globally, diminished productivity and reduced growth prospects.


Listen to these quotations:

9 people feared dead in multiple accident”

bloody Christmas; 187 people killed in road accidents”

3 die in Lagos-Ibadan expressway accident”

trailer crushes 10 to death in Ondo State”

13 killed in Kwara road accident”

36 persons feared dead as bus plunges into Alcaeze river in Ebony”

13 die on Benin-Ore road”


These are just a sample of the frequent horror-stricken headlines in our newspapers which many tend to dismiss as “oh one of those things”. Not until it happens to a very close relation like son, daughter, wife, husband, father, mother, brother or sister do most people really appreciate the magnitude and seriousness of the mental agony, the sufferings, and the losses (particularly of family pillars and breadwinners) involved in each of over 940,659 reported road accidents, with over 318,000 reported fatalities and over 510,000 reported injured people that on the average, have annually been greeting our national highways over the past 59 years (1960-2019) (See Table 2).


Table 2: Road Traffic crash report from 1960-2019 in Nigeria

Year

Fatal

Cases

serious

Cases

minor

Cases

Total

Cases

No.

Killed

No.

Injured

Total

Casualty

1960

826

9,065

4,239

14130

1,083

10,216

11299

1961

193

9,982

5,788

15963

1,313

10,614

11927

1962

1263

9,159

5,895

16317

1,578

10,341

11919

1963

967

6,918

11,950

19835

1,532

7,771

9303

1964

911

7,371

7,645

15927

1,769

12,581

14350

1965

1029

7,762

8,113

16904

1,968

12,024

13992

1966

1680

5,600

6,270

13550

2,000

13,000

15000

1967

1560

5,200

6,240

13000

240

10,000

10240

1968

459

5,865

5,839

12163

2,808

9,474

12282

1969

1559

8,199

6,230

15988

2,437

8,804

11241

1970

1999

6,666

7,991

16656

2,893

13,154

16047

1971

129

8,098

8,518

16745

3,206

14,592

17798

1972

2782

9,275

11,130

23187

3,921

16,161

20082

1973

2981

11,557

11,925

26463

4,537

18,154

22691

1974

3467

9,446

13,869

26782

4,992

18,660

23652

1975

2834

17,352

11,331

31517

5,552

20,132

25684

1976

905

17,352

19,624

37881

6,761

28,155

34916

1977

4242

14,140

17,334

35716

8,000

30,023

38023

1978

4333

14,444

17,334

36111

9,252

28,854

38106

1979

3513

11,708

14,050

29271

8,022

21,203

29225

1980

1856

14,855

15,427

32138

8,736

25,484

34220

1981

4056

13,510

16,214

33780

10,202

26,337

36539

1982

4451

14,838

17,805

37094

11,382

28,589

39971

1983

3853

12,844

15,412

32109

10,462

26,866

37328

1984

4467

10,557

13,868

28892

8,830

23,861

32691

1985

3597

11,991

14,380

29968

9,221

23,853

33074

1986

3022

10,075

12,091

25188

8,154

22,176

30330

1987

3385

11,286

13,544

28215

7,912

22,747

30659

1988

4127

11,091

10,574

25792

9,077

24,413

33490

1989

3838

10,314

9,835

23987

8,714

23,687

32401

1990

6140

8,796

6,998

21934

8,154

22,786

30940

1991

6719

8,982

6,845

22546

9,525

24,508

34033

1992

6986

9,324

6,554

22864

9,620

25,759

35379

1993

6735

8,443

6,281

21459

9,454

24,146

33600

1994

5407

7,522

5,275

18204

7,440

17,938

25378

1995

4701

7,276

5,053

17030

6,647

14,561

21208

1996

4790

6,964

4,688

16442

6,364

15,290

21654

1997

4800

7,701

4,987

17488

6,500

10,786

17286

1998

4757

7,081

4,300

16138

6,338

17,341

23679

1999

4621

6,888

4,356

15865

6,795

17,728

24523

2000

5287

6,820

4,499

16606

8,473

20,677

29150

2001

6966

8,185

5,379

20530

9,946

23,249

33195

2002

4029

7,190

3,325

14544

7,407

22,112

29519

2003

3910

7,882

2,572

14364

6,452

18,116

24568

2004

3275

6,948

4,051

14274

5,351

16,897

22248

2005

2299

4,143

2,620

9062

4,519

15,779

20298

2006

2600

5,550

964

9114

4,944

17,390

22334

2007

2162

4,812

1,503

8477

4,673

17,794

22467

2008

3024

5,671

2,646

11341

6,661

27,980

34641

2009

2460

6,024

2,370

10854

5,693

27,270

32963

2010

2388

6,815

2,182

11385

6,052

35,691

41743

2011

2840

8,357

1,999

13196

6,054

41,165

47219

2012

2935

8,277

2,050

13262

6,092

39,348

45440

2013

3294

8,589

1,700

13583

6,544

40,057

46601

2014

3117

6,356

907

10380

5,996

32,063

38059

2015

2854

6,039

841

9734

5,440

30,478

35918

2016

2638

5,633

1,423

9694

5,053

30,105

35158

2017

2587

3,456

1,340

7383

5,121

31,094

36215

2018

2739

5,849

1,153

9741

5,181

32,220

37401

2019

2896

6,911

1,265

11072

5,483

35,981

41464

Total

194237

515927

440591

1155573

366746

1308185

1674931

Source: FRSC, 2021


This phenomenon has been of serious concern to me and indeed to many Nigerians, over the past two decades and a half. Road traffic accident situation in Nigeria has been alarming and particularly disturbing ever since the first auto crash was recorded. Nigeria’s effort at tackling the challenges of safety on our roads commenced in 1913 with the promulgation of the first transport law-the highway (motor traffic) ordinance whose main objective was “reducing the incidents of road traffic accidents to the bearest minimum” in the southern protectorate”. A nation-wide ordinance followed in 1916 with the amalgamation of the northern and southern protectorate in 1914. Subsequently in 1940 and 1945, the country-wide law was reviewed and adapted along the United Kingdom Road Traffic Act of 1930. Other legislations thereafter included the Road Traffic Act, the federal highway act, the law of carriage, and the federal road safety commission Decree of 1988, which was later amended in 2007. But despite the several revisions of the transport laws and notwithstanding the multiplicity of agencies, with states having their traffic management agencies, the road traffic crashes kept increasing all over the country.


CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORK:

  • The Epidemiological Model of Road Traffic Accident:

It was developed and used in medical services but was modified and used in accident study. Road traffic accident is a multifaceted phenomenon with diverse causal factors. The effectiveness of any road safety measures hinges squarely not only on the appreciation of the complex nature and multi-dimensional aspects of road accident occurrence but also on how the numerous causal factors can be manipulated to reduce traffic accidents on the roads. Road Traffic Accidents as a transportation problem is complex because of the interactive nature of the system and components involved However, the road traffic system is made up of three components viz:

  • The road user - Human

  • The vehicle - Mechanical

  • The road - Environment


The collective action of these various components is a system where each is functioning independently so as to complement the functions of the others in order to realize a desired result. Any defect or malfunctioning in one of the three components may result in a defect in the entire system, which may lead to a breakdown and could cause road traffic accident. Figure 1 depicts what Epidemiological model is all about.


Image is available at PDF file

Source: Jegede, 1989, p. 68 and Atubi 2006, P. 49)

Fig. 1: Epidemiological Model of Road Traffic Accident


According to the epidemiological concept the “Host” is the person or persons involved in the road traffic accident. The human factor is superimposed in other traffic accident causation factors because he is the one who designs, develops and maintain roads and vehicles, hence human factor is the prime mover of Road Traffic Accident (RTA). The “AGENT” is the motor vehicle while the “ENVIRONMENT” is the sum of physical and social conditions that contribute in one way or another to the occurrence of the traffic accident. In as much as these factors jointly or individually contribute to road traffic accidents on our roads.


The influence of each of these three components could be analytically determined through many ways. What readily comes to mind when considering traffic accidents on our roads are:

  • What is the average mechanical condition of motor vehicles that can guarantee reduced traffic accidents on highways?

  • To what extent has the condition of our roads contributed to road traffic accident prevention?

  • To what extent has the consumption of alcohol and other drugs affected road traffic accident prevention?


Attempt should be focused on these and many other questions in order to obtain useful clues that could form the basis of road traffic accident prevention.


PHASES OF ACCIDENT:

Accident as we all know are caused and as much they don’t just happen, the critical evaluation of accident phenomenon clearly indicate three specific phases. The three phases is the total consumption of an accident at any point when it is recorded. The phases as a matter of fact are interwoven and occur sequently after each other. These phases are pre-accident phase, the accident phase, and the post-accident phase of highway safety.


  • Pre-Accident Phase:

The pre-crash phase groups together all preventive or precautionary measures aimed at controlling or abating road accidents. Under this phase, falls all the contributory factors like the environment, the vehicle, the road users/persons, and the preventive or precautionary measures taken to normally avert accident. It is an indication of several conditions that are capable of causing accident. In other words, it implies all situations and circumstances preceding the occurrence of an accident. We can as well evaluate certain conditions that are capable of causing an accident before they are recorded. In short, this phase is concerned with accident avoidance.


  • The Accident Phase:

Once the pre-crash phase cannot be averted, the crash phase is the actual occurrence of the accident, when the mechanical device is involved in actual collision resulting in an accident, the type of outcome from the accident to the victim also belongs to this phase. Similarly, is the spot of which the accident occurred and the time of the day, which are all major indices of the crash phase. Research had demonstrated that up to 80% reduction in deaths of drivers and passengers can be achieved through the use of safety belts alone (Final Rule. 1984; Mueller. et al., 1988; & Rivera. et al., 2000). The focus of this second phase, therefore, is on injury prevention.


The following actions should be taken during road traffic accident:

  • Assess the Situation:

  • Locate the victim

  • Examine the victims quickly

  • Prevent further risk of fire, explosion, road traffic

  • Keep the vehicle stationary

  • Switch off engine, fuel and battery connection

  • Display warning signals

  • Send for help


  • Care of the Victim:

  • Rescue the trapped casualties

  • Look for breathing, heart function and consciousness

  • Care for unconscious cases first

  • Take care of bleeding and fracture

  • Use car first aid kit if available

  • Transport casualty to nearest hospital


  • Care of the Vehicle:

  • Keep the vehicles immobilized and in safety custody

  • Protect the property from damage

  • Take help of local people

  • Inform police


  • Post-Accident Phase:

The post-crash phase can be described as the process of evaluating or assessing the consequences of road accidents. Such evaluation is based on socio-economic, environmental and political effects, using quantifiable and qualitative analytical tools. In this phase, we are concerned with saving those who need not die, with reducing hospitalization, permanent disability and unnecessary deaths. Indeed, the focus is on accessibility to adequate and prompt emergency communications, transportation and medical care, that determine the livelihood of the continuing survival of the survivors of the crashes. Therefore, the concern of this phase is on severity reduction, which would include the availability and competence of ambulance drivers and attendants in handling victims at accident scenes and the receptivity of hospital staff to accident victims who are not accompanied by police officers.


The causes of accidents has been listed to include speeding (4-5 percent), driving under the influence of alcohol and other psychoactive substances, non-use of motorcycle helmets, seat belts and child restraints, distracted driving, unsafe road infrastructure, unsafe vehicles, inadequate post-crash care, and inadequate law enforcement of traffic laws (WHO. 2018; Okogba, E. 2018; Atubi, A. O. 2007b; Atubi, A. O., & Onokala, P. C. 2007c; Atubi, A. O., & Onokala, P. C. 2009; & Atubi, A. O., & Ugbomeh, B. A. 2009).


Virtually all other causes are prevalent in Nigeria, especially, unsafe road infrastructure. Most of the road networks are in disrepair and can best be described as roads to hell where human lives are wasted daily. Given the humongous lives that are wasted on our roads across the country with the attendant socio-economic losses, all stakeholders must join forces to make Nigeria roads safe (Atubi, A. O. & Gbadamosi, 2015).


We need new traffic safety strategies. These requires a paradigm shift, a change in the ways that risks are measured and potential safety strategies are evaluated/audited (Hughes, B. P. 2017; May, M. et al., 2011; & Litman, T. 2013). Reducing road traffic accidents is a global challenge and succeeding will require the involvement of multiple stakeholders at the global, national and community levels (Atubi, A.O. 2014; Atubi, A.O. 2015b; Atubi, A.O. 2017; & Atubi, A.O. 2020b).


FREQUENCY OF ROAD TRAFFIC ACCIDENTS IN NIGERIA:

In Nigeria an average of 12 people died daily in 2019 road accidents crashes. In all 4,163 people were killed in crashes during the period. However, 59,724 people were involved in the road crashes in which 14,425 vehicles were involved, while 27,408 were injured in the accidents and 27,523 escaped without injuries (FRSC. 2020)


The World Health Organisation’s 2018 Global status report on road safety shows that one out of every four road crashes that occur in Africa are reported in Nigeria. Every four hours, no fewer than two lives are lost on Nigerian roads. And every year about 20,000 of the 11,654 million vehicles in the country are involved in accidents (Okogba, E. 2018; National Bureau of Statistics. 2019; & FRSC. 2018).


The number of lives lost to road traffic accidents from January 2013 to June 2018 are as follows: 2013 – 5,539; 2014 – 4,430; 2015 – 5,400; 2016 – 5,053; 2017 – 5,049; 2018 – 5,449. This tally indicates that in 2018, no fewer than 126 lives had been wasted in road crashes. Summation of these figures gives a heartrending total of 28,195 lives crushed in 68 months, an equivalent of 415 lives per months, 14 persons day, and two lives every four hours. This makes Nigeria one of the countries with very high road fatalities in the world.


There were 33.7 deaths per 100,000 people in Nigeria every year, making Nigeria one of the countries with the highest number of fatality in Africa. Zimbabwe has the worst road fatality in the world with 74.5 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants. The world average is 17.4 Africa is 26.6, and according to the International Transport Forum (ITF), road safety annual report for 2018 while Norway has the least road fatality with two deaths per 100,000 inhabitants (FRSC. 2018; WHO. 2018; Atubi, A. O. 2020).


The number of registered vehicles in Nigeria in 2018 was put at 11,653,871 with an estimated population of 198 million, the vehicle per population ratio was 0.06 (NBS, 2018). Since most crashes involves at least two vehicles and given that 10,026 crashes were recorded in 2017, it means that at least 20,000 of the 11,654 million registered vehicles were affected in the crashes. The figure would be more, if multiple auto crashes were included.


Approximately 1.25 million people die each year on the world’s roads, and between 20 and 50 million sustain non-fatal injuries. The global status report on road safety is the first broad assessment of the road safety situation in 178 countries, using data drawn from a standardized survey. The results show that road traffic injuries remain an important public health problem, particularly for low – income and middle – income countries like Nigeria (WHO, 2017).


By most accounts, speed has been identified as a major cause of road traffic accidents; influencing the risk of occurrence and the severity of injuries arising from such accidents.


Speed contributes to almost 30 percent of deaths on the road in high – income countries and about 50 percent in low-income nations, including Nigeria (WHO, 2017). In the 2016 RTC report, 379 persons died and 2,338 others sustained varying degrees of injuries in November while 391 died and 2,557 were injured in October.


This statistics informed the speed control policy of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) which first phase was inaugurated nationwide on February 1, 2017. The policy prescribes the installation of speed limiting device in vehicles to keep them within limits stipulated by the Nigeria highway code. It means that no matter how the driver tends to accelerate, his vehicle cannot exceed the speed limit programmed in the device.


For private cars, the code stipulates a maximum speed limit of 80kilometre per hour (km/h) on highways and 100km/h on express ways.

Taxis and buses are expected to maintain speed limit of 80km/h and 90km/h on highways and expressways respectively. The code limits tankers and articulated vehicles to 50km/h on highways and 60km/h on expressways.


Although there has been some improvements made by the FRSC in conjunction with the police force but there are still lots of room for improvement. Presently, both of them do not have sufficient resources for checking speed violations, careless and dangerous driving and parking offences among others. Unfortunately, such an important issue as reducing road traffic accidents in Nigeria has not yet received the adequate attention that it deserves.


Table 3: Mean of the reported number of injured from road traffic accidents in different LGA’s in Lagos State

S/N

L.G.A

No.

Means

1

Ikeja

50

81.42a

2

Lagos Mainland

50

73.21ab

3

Lagos Island

50

70.32ab

4

Ajeromi/Ifelodun

50

62.41bc

5

Mushin

50

57.06c

6

Apapa

25

49.33c

7

Oshodi/Isolo

25

48.40d

8

Ikorodu

50

47.38d

9

Surulere

25

46.48d

10

Badagry

50

45.36d

11

Alimosho

15

45.09d

12

Agege

15

44.03d

13

Ojo

15

43.46ef

14

Epe

50

41.75ef

15

Shomolu

25

40.50ef

16

Ifako-Ijaye

15

36.42efh

17

Amuwo-Odofin

15

33.68fgh

18

Ibeju-Lekki

15

30.13gh

19

Kosofe

15

30.10gh

20

Eti-Osa

15

22.76i


Table 4: Means of the reported number of injured from reported road traffic accident from 1970-2019.

S/N

Years

N

Means

1

2016

13

90.63a

2

2018

13

87.75ab

3

2010

13

85.16abc

4

2006

13

82.63abcd

5

2013

13

82.74abcd

6

2003

13

81.62abcd

7

1976

13

80.63abcd

8

1988

18

80.00abcd

9

1977

13

78.41e

10

1975

13

77.50e

11

1982

13

73.14fg

12

1986

18

72.86fg

13

1984

13

71.58fg

14

1983

13

70.23fgh

15

1974

13

68.24fghi

16

1987

18

66.42fghij

17

1989

26

58.61ghij

18

1994

26

57.73ghij

19

1993

26

54.60hijk

20

1990

26

54.45hijk

21

1971

13

54.13hijk

22

1970

13

52.38ijk

23

1991

26

52.25ijk

24

1997

26

52.75ijk

25

1972

13

52.09ijk

26

1996

26

51.63ijk

27

2000

26

51.64ijk

28

1992

26

51.39ijk

29

1998

26

51.99jki

30

2001

26

49.66ki

31

1995

26

49.34ki

32

1980

26

49.10m

33

1985

13

46.24ml

34

1979

13

45.61ml

35

1981

18

44.26ml

36

1973

13

41.98mn

37

1978

13

41.8mn

38

2002

18

40.65mno

39

2004

18

40.6mno

40

2019

26

38.49mno

41

2017

13

38.34mno

42

2015

18

36.75mno

43

2008

18

35.73op

44

1999

18

35.48op

45

2007

26

33.77pq

46

2005

13

32.84pq

47

2011

13

31.67pq

48

2009

26

31.48qr

49

2012

26

30.33qr

50

2014

26

29.73s

Source: Authors computation


Table 5: Regression results of the factors of injured from road traffic accidents in Lagos State

Independent variables

Regression coefficients

Std. Error

T.Start

Remark

Length of roads (km)

1.913

0.643

4.431

S

Presence of road safety

97.536

70.16

1.444

NS

Population

-1.53 x 105

0.000

-.965

NS

Constant

38.432

132.115

0.365


S = Significant at 0.05 level of probability

NS = Not significant


Indeed, so serious have the problems of road accidents become in recent time that driving on the roads is one of the most closely regulated activities in the world today. The worrisome aspect is that 90% of the statistics are from developing countries like Nigeria. Before 2030, deaths from road traffic accident (RTA’s) will surpass cerebrovascular disease, tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS. Other studies on road traffic accidents patterns include (Atubi, A. O. 2010a; Atubi, A. O. 2010b; Atubi, A. O. 2010c; Atubi, A. O. 2011b, Atubi, A. O. 2011g; Atubi, A. O. 2012b; Atubi, A. O. 2012g; Atubi, A. O. 2012w; Atubi, A. O. 2013d; Atubi, A. O. 2017; & Atubi, A. O. 2018).


It is estimated that the macro-economic burden of road injuries for 166 countries shows that between 2015 and 2030, road injuries will cost the world economy $1.8 trillion through a combination of diversion – healthcare expenditure that would otherwise have been used for savings or investment and losses in employment due to mortality and morbidity. This figure is more than the aggregate GDP of Canada (the World’s tenth largest economy) in 2017. The economic burden of road injuries is equivalent to an annual tax of 0.12% on global GDP during this period (World Bank, 2019). See Table 6.


Table 6: Comparison of Macroeconomic loss and lifetime disease burden by World Bank Region and country income group


Population in 2015 Million (Global %)

Product in 2015, Billions of constant 2010 USS (Global %)

Economic loss in 2015-30 billions of constant 2010 USS (Global %)

Disability adjusted life years in 2015, million (Global %)

By World Bank Region




East Asia and Pacific

2251

(31.3%)

20236

(27.3%)

560

(31.1%)

21.5

(32.2%)

Europe and Central Asia

906

(12.6%)

22.466

(30.3%)

345

(19.2%)

5.8

(8.7%)

Latin America and Caribbean

584

(8.1%)

5339

(7.2%)

115

(6.4%)

5.8

(8.7%)

Middle East and North Africa

404

(5.6%)

3146

(4.2%)

103

(5.8%)

5.8

(8.6%)

North America

356

(4.9%)

18500

(25.0%)

515

(28.6%)

2.6

(3.9%)

South Asia

1744

(24.2%)

2796

(3.8%)

121

(6.7%)

15.9

(23.8%)

Sub-Saharan Africa

950

(13.2%)

1621

(2.2%)

38

(2.1%)

9.5

(14.1%)

By World Bank Country income group



Low income

621

(8.6%)

374

(0.5%)

11.0

(0.6%)

6.8

(10.1%)

Lower-middle income

2856

(39.7%)

5812

(7.8%)

202

(11.2%)

26.8

(40.1%)

Upper middle income

2521

(35.0%)

18952

(25.6%)

621

(34.6%)

26.0

(38.9%)

High income

1196

(16.6%)

48966

(66.1%)

963

(53.6%)

7.3

(10.9%)

Global (166 countries)

7195

(100%)

74103

(100%)

1797

(100%)

70.0

(100%)

Source: World Bank, (2019)


Private-ownership of roads in Nigeria is still at the deliberation stage. In other words, roads (tarred and un-tarred) are owned by Federal, State and Local authorities in Nigeria. Most of these roads, however, share a common characteristic of being “unsafe at any speed” at any time of the day. This is as a result of the low quality of the road components, structures and patterns. For example, road surfaces are undulating and rough. Also, the poor standard of road infrastructure like guard railings/barriers, pavement marking and signs; illumination levels, traffic signals, horizontal/vertical alignment and sight lines contribute largely to the increasing carnage on Nigerian road network. Therefore, there is serious need for policy intervention programmes on accident prevention in Nigeria.


POLICY IMPLICATIONS:

With a daily average of 76 fatalities and 104 causalities and 14.2 deaths per 100,000 population for the year 2004 from road traffic accident, Nigeria seems to have increased its fatality rate per accident even though the absolute number of the accident seems to have decreased. The establishment of the Federal Road Safety Commission to evolve a scientific and cultural relevant programme to meet the objective of its role as enunciated in degree No. 45, 1988 is another in the efforts of government to increase safety measures in Nigeria. One factor that has worsened this accident rate is the use of poorly maintained vehicle occasioned by the structural adjustment policy of 1989. This is further worsened by lack of genuine spare parts, and the flooding of the market by fake spare parts. These further put the life of the drivers and passengers at greater risk. Similarly, the cost of tyres which has been put beyond the reach of the average car owners has led a lot of people to their untimely death. Inability to change these bad tyres lead to blowouts. This situation therefore have turned many a vehicle to “mobile coffins”. However some of the interventions for Nigeria include;


  • Seat Belts:

No matter how you will drive there is always a chance that you will be involved in an accident. You cannot predict when it may happen. From statistical analysis of road traffic accidents in Nigeria since independence the chance that one will be injured in an accident in his life time is 1:3; that he may be killed in an accident is 1:9. The best protection inside the vehicle is the use of seat belts (Federal Road Safety Commission Highway Code, 1997). Similarly, the use of seat belts in Nigeria was optional, hence many vehicles are not fitted with seat belts. In those that have them, they are not being utilized by drivers and passengers alike. But currently, the Federal Road Safety Commission has made the use of seat belts compulsory to all motorists with effect from July 1st 2005. In most developed nations especially Britain, a lot of money has been sunk into the implementation of the use of seat belts. The seat belt is an example of an active intervention for occupants because it requires some action on the part of the users. Its effectiveness in preventing injury and death in motor vehicle collisions has been well established by many earlier research studies.


  • Motorcycle Helmets:

Safety helmet worn in the correct way and properly fastened in the most effective way could increase your chances of surviving an accident (Federal Road Safety Commission Highway Code, 1997). In the time past, various laws were enacted by Federal, State and Local governments to curb the excesses of the riders. These include the National Road Traffic Regulation of 2004 and FRSC Establishment Act 2007 to mention but a few. The acquisition of motorcycle helmets is well within the budgets of the people who afford motorcycles in this country. In addition, promulgating helmet laws has been associated with significant decrease in mortality and injuries sustained from motorcycle crashes (Fasakin, J. O. 2000; Fasakin, J. O. 2002). When a motorcycle is acquired, purchase of an approved helmet should be encouraged or even mandatory in low-income countries (LICs) given the feasibility and potential sustainability of this intervention.


Just like seat belts have proven effective in motor vehicle crash related injury reduction, motorcycle helmets have proved effective in motorcycle crash related injury reduction making motorcycle helmet laws a strategy with proven effectiveness. Infact, recent research findings in setting other than the United States corroborate the evidence for the effectiveness of mandatory motorcycle helmet laws (Tsai, M. C., & Hemenway, D. 1999; Conrad, P. et al., 1996; Atubi, A. O. 2006).


  • Speed Limits:

Drivers often think that the faster they drive, the more they impress themselves and others. They fail to remember that anybody’s tyre can burst that accidents at high speed are more disastrous than accidents at low speed; that the vehicle is a machine and can fail at any time. At 100kmph, your vehicle moves at 28 metres per second, just imagine where you could be in only one second if you veer off the road which is usually less than 12 metres wide. (Federal Road Safety Commission Highway Code. 1997; Atubi, A. O. 2020b). The Federal Road Safety Commission also imposed speed limit for all categories of vehicles i.e. 100kmph maximum speed for all private cars, 90kmph for commercial vehicles and 60kmph for trucks. But common sense often dictates lower speed limits. Speeding on highways is a major cause of traffic crashes. The effect of speed on causing traffic related crashes, injuries and deaths has been documented in many settings (Farmer, C. M. et al., 1999; Posada, J. et al., 2000). For example, the 1995 repeal of the United States national maximum speed limit, allowing states to raise interstate speed limits, resulted in a 15% increase in fertilities in 24 states that raised speed limits. In Adelaide, Australia the risk of severe crash involvement was found to increase as vehicles speed increased (Moore, V. M. et al., 1995). Infact, the over 20% reduction in traffic crashes and deaths in Brazil has been partly attributed to speed limits which have been posted on many roads since 1998 (Poli de Figueiredo. 2000).


  • Public Education Targeting Motorists:

Your safety depends on what you see and how you react. If you need spectacles to meet the official eye sight standard, wear them. It is an offence to drive with uncorrected defective vision. For example, a Nigerian study found a third of taxi drivers to have poor vision. Although the findings from a 1999 study revealed the ineffectiveness of driver education for young drivers (Vernick, J. S. et al., 1999), there is some evidence that general public education along with some behavioural modification that targets motorists may have some impact on road safety. One area is education of motorists on posted traffic signs. A recent study in three countries i.e. United States, Sweden and United Kingdom, showed that comprehension of 28 posted traffic signs for drivers were related to years of driving experience (Al-Madani, H. 2000).


  • Database Development and Information Sharing:

Whilst each agency requires developing a data base for effective planning of its operations, inter-agency collaboration and information sharing are also important to widen the prism of evolving one big road safety net spread all over the country.


  • Traffic Control by Signs:

A thorough knowledge of traffic signs, signals, road and markings together with signals by authorized traffic officers are to ensure a smooth and safe traffic flows. You must know them and be able to recognize them immediately. In the case of regulatory signs such as stop at intersection, stop police, stop highway survey, no left turn, no right turn, No “U” turn, No entry for lorries, no waiting, etc, you must obey them without hesitation.

  • Research on causes of road traffic accidents in the country, especially their spatial and temporal patterns on a regular basis is recommended.


The decade of action for road safety (2011-2020) was proclaimed by UN general assembly to accelerate coordinated international action aimed at reducing the number of deaths due to road traffic injuries. Within this context, the UN road safety collaboration (UNRSC) developed a global plan of action as a broad framework of activities which were grouped into 5 pillars, namely:

  • Pillar one - Road safety management

  • Pillar Two - Safer road and mobility

  • Pillar Three - Safer vehicles

  • Pillar Four - Safer road users

  • Pillar Five - Post crash response


The Federal Road Safety Corps as the lead agency in road safety management and administration in Nigeria aligns its operational activities and strategic goals towards achieving these goals in Nigeria by keying into all the 5 pillars by setting target into reduction of number of road crashes and fatalities.


Despite the efforts made in tackling the problem of lack of adequate safety on Nigeria’s roads, the problem still persists. The following challenges are noted:

  • Need for modern equipment to practically tackle the issues

  • Failure to sanction road traffic violators appropriately

  • Insufficient funding to execute more projects and programmes especially those associated with the decade of action

  • Inadequate number of trained personnel to tackle the issues at both the policy development and implementation level.


All over the world the phenomenon of road traffic accident has become the most serious traffic problem in need of a pragmatic solution. In Nigeria, this problem has been difficult to address probably because of the country’s level of development. Roads are often built through areas where economic activity already exists, thus creating conflict over space between road users and the local population. People also tend to settle near roads because of the increased economic activity. This is a dynamic process involving changing populations, changing settlements, changing migration patterns and changing needs, yet these changeable solutions are generally not considered in the design and construction of roads.


CONCLUSION:

As we approach the end of this decade of action for road safety and start on the relevant road safety target dates set out in 2030 agenda, Nigeria must deepen national engagement with the new 2021-2030 time frame for reduction in road traffic deaths and injuries. To push forward in the second decade of action for road safety, with a goal of reducing road traffic deaths and injuries to at least 50% from 2021-2030, Nigeria must support the call upon member states and stakeholders to continue action through 2030 on all road safety-related targets of the SDGs, including target 3.6 in line with pledge of the 2019 high-level political forum on sustainable development conveyed under the general assembly. We must especially take into account the remaining decade of action to deliver the SDGs by 2030 in their entirety.


REFERENCES:

  1. Al-Madani, H. (2000). Influence of drivers’ comprehension of posted signs on their safety related characteristics. Accident Analysis & Prevention32(4), 575-581.

  2. Atubi A.O. (2013d). An Evaluation of Transport Infrastructure In Lagos State, Nigeria. Journal of Alternative Perspectives in the Social Sciences, 5(3), 447-494.

  3. Atubi, A. O. (2012W). Road Traffic Accidents for Sustainable Development in the Third millennium: Interventions for Nigeria. Contemporary Journal of Social Sciences, 1(1), 55-68.

  4. Atubi, A. O. (2006). Road Traffic Accident Patterns in Lagos State from 1970 to 2001. Unpublished Ph. D. Thesis Submitted to the Department of Geography, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, 72-81.

  5. Atubi, A. O. (2010a). Spatial and temporal perspective on road traffic accident variations in Lagos Mainland, South-Western Nigeria. African Research Review4(1), 256-272.

  6. Atubi, A. O. (2010b). Road transport system management and traffic in Lagos, South Western Nigeria. African Research Review4(4), serial no. 16, 459-470.

  7. Atubi, A. O. (2010c). Road traffic accident variations in lagos state, nigeria: A synopsis of variance spectra. African Research Review4(2), 197-218.

  8. Atubi, A. O. (2011b). Road Traffic Accident Patterns in selected Local Government Areas in Lagos State, Nigeria. Journal of Applied Science and Development2(1&2), 17-38.

  9. Atubi, A. O. (2012a). Determinants of road traffic accident occurrences in Lagos State: Some lessons for Nigeria. International Journal of Humanities and Social Science2(6), 252-259.

  10. Atubi, A. O. (2012b). Epidemiology of injuries from road traffic accidents in Lagos State, Nigeria. AFRREV STECH: An International Journal of Science and Technology1(2), 56-75.

  11. Atubi, A. (2012g). A thirty-two year review of deaths from motor accidents in Lagos State, Nigeria. International Journal of Humanities and Social Science2(14), 302-309.

  12. Atubi, A.O. (2017), Socio-economic Effects of Road Traffic Accident in Warri Metropolis, Delta Stat, Nigeria – A NEXUS. International Journal of Agriculture, Environment and Biotechnology, Indi, 2(2), 118-136.

  13. Atubi, A. O. (2018). Identification of cycles and periodic oscillations of reported number of injured from road traffic accidents in Lagos State, Nigeria. European Journal of Research in Social Sciences Vol6(4), 1-16.

  14. Atubi, A. O. (2020a). A Fifty Year Report Appraisal of Reported Number of Injured From Road Traffic Accidents in Lagos State, Nigeria (1970 To 2019). African Journal of Management, Social Sciences and Humanities9(1), 160-172.

  15. Atubi, A. O. (2020b). Road traffic accidents in Nigeria: The neglected “epidemic”. Journal of the social sciences48(4), 1622-1635.

  16. Atubi, A. O., & Onokala, P. C. (2007c). Effect of Road Traffic Accident in the Niger Delta: A Case of Benin City. International Journal of Environmental Issues5(1), 184-195.

  17. Atubi, A. O., & Onokala, P. C. (2009). Contemporary analysis of variability in road traffic accidents in Lagos State, Nigeria. African geographical review28(1), 11-41.

  18. Atubi, A. O., & Ugbomeh, B. A. (2009). Road Traffic Accidents for Sustainable Development in Developing countries: interventions for Nigeria. International Journal of Sustainable Development3(3), 56-65.

  19. Conrad, P., Bradshaw, Y. S., Lamsudin, R., Kasniyah, N., & Costello, C. (1996). Helmets, injuries and cultural definitions: motorcycle injury in urban Indonesia. Accident Analysis & Prevention28(2), 193-200.

  20. Farmer, C. M., Retting, R. A., & Lund, A. K. (1999). Changes in motor vehicle occupant fatalities after repeal of the national maximum speed limit. Accident Analysis & Prevention31(5), 537-543.

  21. Fasakin, J. O. (2000). A Land-use Analysis of the Operational Characteristics of Commercial Motorcycles in Akure, Nigeria. Unpublished PhD Thesis Submitted to the department of urban and regional planning, Federal University of Technology Akure.

  22. Fasakin, J. O. (2002). Daily cost considerations in the operations of commercial motorcycles in Nigeria: a locational analysis for Akure township. Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice36(3), 189-202.

  23. FRSC. (2020). Average of 12 people died daily in 2019 road accident across Nigeria. Agency Report National Bureau of Statistics, Nigeria (2019) Road traffic accident statistics of Nigeria. Annual Quarterly.

  24. Gbadamosi, K. T. (2003). Traffic Regulation and Road Traffic Accidents in Nigeria: A Spatial Analysis. (An Unpublished Ph.D Thesis submitted to the Department of Geography University of Ibadan).

  25. Hughes, B. P. (2017). A Comprehensive framework for future road safety strategies (Doctoral dissertation, Curtin University).

  26. Jegede, F. J. (1989). Spatio-Temporal Analysis of road accident in Oyo State, Accident Analysis and prevention, 20(3), 68-75.

  27. Litman, T. (2013). The new transportation planning paradigm. Institute of Transportation Engineers. ITE Journal83(6), 20-28.

  28. Juillard, C., Labinjo, M., Kobusingye, O., & Hyder, A. A. (2010). Socioeconomic impact of road traffic injuries in West Africa: exploratory data from Nigeria. Injury prevention16(6), 389-392.

  29. May, M., Tranter, P. J., & Warn, J. R. (2011). Progressing road safety through deep change and transformational leadership. Journal of Transport Geography19(6), 1423-1430.

  30. Moore, V. M., Dolinis, J., & Woodward, A. J. (1995). Vehicle speed and risk of a severe crash. Epidemiology, 6, 258-262.

  31. Okogba, E. (2018). highways of death in Nigeria. Vanguard Newspaper, September 9. Online Version.

  32. Onakomaiya, S. O. (1988). Unsafe at any Speed: Toward Road Transportation for Survival: Inaugural Lecture. University of Ilorin, Ilorin.

  33. Poli de Figueiredo. (2000). Increase in fines and driver license withdrawal have effectively reduced immediate deaths from trauma on Brazilian roads. First year report on new traffic code. Journal of injury, 32, 91-94.

  34. Posada, J., Ben-Michael, E., Herman, A., Kahan, E., & Richter, E. (2000). Death and injury from motor vehicle crashes in Colombia. Revista Panamericana de Salud Pública7(2), 88-91.

  35. Tsai, M. C., & Hemenway, D. (1999). Effect of the mandatory helmet law in Taiwan. Injury prevention5(4), 290-291.

  36. Vernick, J. S., Li, G., Ogaitis, S., MacKenzie, E. J., Baker, S. P., & Gielen, A. C. (1999). Effects of high school driver education on motor vehicle crashes, violations, and licensure. American journal of preventive medicine16(1), 40-46.

  37. WHO. (2017). World report on road traffic injury prevention. Geneva.

  38. Elvik, R. (2000). How much do road accidents cost the national economy?. Accident Analysis & Prevention32(6), 849-851.

  39. World Health Organisation. (2018). Fifth United Nations Global road safety week.

Copyright © 2020 Inlight Publisher (IARCON INTERATIONAL LLP). All Rights Reserved.