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‘Warren Park junction accident black spot’

Warren Park residents yesterday called on authorities to swiftly craft measures to curb road traffic accidents at the Warren Park 1 junction, which has now become a traffic black spot.

The plea follows the horror accident last Friday involving a Toyota Hiace kombi carrying 15 passengers, a Nissan Caravan kombi and a bus, which claimed six lives, while several others were injured.

Two other accidents occurred at the same spot on Saturday, and badly damaged vehicles, but did not claim lives.

Those who witnessed last Friday’s accident said it occurred when the Toyota Hiace moved onto the lane of oncoming traffic in a bid to beat traffic congestion.

Warren Park residents and vendors who operate near the spot, called on authorities to install traffic lights at the intersection to minimise the number of accidents around the area.

“This area is now a black spot. We have seen too many accidents here: vehicles colliding, people getting run-over and many people have lost their lives,” said Mr Innocent Muchengeti, a resident. 

“We are asking for traffic lights at the turn-off because this road is very busy and drivers sometimes fail to give way to each other. This sometimes leads to drivers coming from the city centre losing patience and turning in front of oncoming traffic, causing accidents.”

A vendor, Mr Dylan Mafuta, said: “We always witness accidents along this road and I cannot even count the number of accidents a week.”

Following the accident, experts have called on the Government to enforce Statutory Instrument 118 of 2023, which compels all public service vehicles to be fitted with a speed limiting device so that such vehicles do not exceed 100km/h, and reduce accidents.

Mr Tendai Mujuru, an expert in speed limiting devices, said there was need to use “our scientific abilities to bring the problem of highway traffic safety under control”. 

“There is no doubt that many of the recent road disasters are due to speeding given the severity of the crashes, the injuries sustained by the victims and the fatality rate. Speed is a risk factor for road traffic deaths and injuries,” he said.

Mr Mujuru called on drivers to exercise extreme caution and to travel during the day this festive season.

In November, over 30 people died in three separate road accidents, with two of the accidents involving kombis.

Herald

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