The National, Wednesday, May 18, 2011
By ANGELINE KARIUS
ROAD accidents are caused or influenced by a number of factors such as vehicle defect, road environment, road user behaviour or a combination of these, Joel Luma said.
Luma, the secretary of the Department of Works, said that research across the world had found that human behaviour was one of the most common factors causing road accidents.
He said the design of a road could strongly influence road user behaviour and had an impact on road safety.
He said road improvements were effective and sustainable to reduce accidents involving vehicles other than driver training, education or legislation to penalise poor behaviours on the roads.
Luma said the department recognised that road safety engineering had a major part to play alongside education and enforcement to help reduce road death toll in the country.
“It (Works) is determined to help achieve the National Road Safety Council’s ambitious vision in making PNG’s roads the safest in the Western Pacific.
“The government’s Vision 2050 and development strategic plan note the need and intention to expand and improve the standard of road network within the country,” Luma said.
“We, therefore, have a unique opportunity to incorporate safety practices during the planning and design stage of this expanded road network at marginal additional cost,” he said.
Luma added that with the assistance from AusAID’s transport sector support programme, the department is seeking to adopt a more safety-conscious design approach, road maintenance, rehabilitation and construction.