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Spot fines for road traffic offences to be piloted in 4 regions

Five major routes have been selected as pilot roads for the spot fine system under which offending drivers will be charged on the spot for committing minor offences.

The system, which begins next month, will be tried on selected major roads in Accra, Tema, Kumasi, Sunyani and Dodowa before going nationwide in August 2014.

Speaking at a programme to review the National Road Safety Action Plan in Accra yesterday, DSP Samuel Sasu Mensah of the Motor Traffic and Transport Department (MTTD) of the Ghana Police Service said the department was working with the National Road Safety Commission (NRSC) and other stakeholders, to implement and enforce the spot fine system.

Specific roads targeted in the pilot are: Accra-Tema, Accra-Achimota-Ofankor-Nsawam, Accra-Kasoa-Winneba, Accra-Adenta, Adenta-Dodowa and Adenta- Aburi.

The rest are Tema-Akosombo, Tema-Sogakope, Kumasi city, Kumasi-Bekwai, Kumasi-Techiman, Kumasi-Mampong and Kumasi-Sunyani roads.

Between January and September this year, MTTD records indicated that close to GH¢1.2 million was recorded as fines paid by offending drivers.

Among the 38 offences that will attract spot fines are jumping the red light, driving without a seatbelt, driving without a licence, refusal to renew road worthy certificate, use of unspecified tinted glass and driving a vehicle without reflectors at the back.

The system was scheduled to be introduced in May but it was suspended after public outcry over the possibility of its abuse by the police.

The review of the third National Road Safety Action Plan, which spans 2011 to 2020, is to assess the country's achievements, challenges and the way forward in reducing the carnage on the roads.

Organised by the NRSC, it brought together officials from the MTTD, the DVLA, the Ghana Highway Authority, the Department of Urban Roads, the National Ambulance Service, the Ghana Red Cross Society and the Department of Feeder Roads, who presented what their institutions had been doing to achieve 50 per cent reduction in accident fatalities across the country.

The plan falls within the United Nations Decade of Action for road safety aimed at increasing efforts at saving lives on the world's roads.

In a speech read on her behalf, the Deputy Minister of Transport, Ms Joyce Mogtari, urged the NRSC to put in place a robust monitoring and evaluation mechanism to ensure the timely implementation of the action plans by all the agencies involved.

By Seth J. Bokpe/Daily Graphic/Ghana

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