Driving To Deliver Your Business

City residents want footbridges built on fast new road to prevent accidents

A section of newly constructed Outer Ring Road in Nairobi. {Photo: David Njaaga, Standard}

IN SUMMARY

  • According to statistics from NTSA, about 843 pedestrians have been killed in Nairobi since January while another 547 were seriously injured
  • Pedestrians using the road have had a hard time because the designated pathways have been taken over by hawkers, boda boda riders and matatus

City residents have called on the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) to erect footbridges on the newly-constructed Outer Ring Road to reduce the number of accidents, which they say are on the rise. “Most pedestrians are knocked down as they try to cross the road when it is dark,” said Brian Kihamba, a Doonholm estate resident. Mr Kihamba said most accidents happened between Taj Mall and Doonholm.

“It is really hectic crossing from one side of the road to the other, especially for schoolchildren. This issue should be addressed immediately,” said another resident. Ivan Mugambi, a motorist, asked NTSA to ensure that all boda boda riders wore reflector jackets and protective gear, especially at night.

According to statistics from NTSA, about 843 pedestrians have been killed in Nairobi since January while another 547 were seriously injured. Another 177 escaped with minor injuries. The authority’s Road Safety Enforcement Director, Njeri Waithaka, said they were aware of the concerns and were trying to find a solution to the problem.

“We conducted a safety audit on the road and found that it was not safe for pedestrians. The road is a project of the Kenya Urban Roads Authority (Kura) and we will share our findings with them so they can act and ensure that it is safe,” said Ms Waithaka. She said the audit revealed that the road had no clear markings, which is dangerous for both motorists and pedestrians.

Of major concern was the fact that there were no streetlights, posing a great risk, especially at night. Pedestrians using the road have had a hard time because the designated pathways have been taken over by hawkers, boda boda riders and matatus. “The problem with Outer Ring Road is that it favours motorists but doesn’t effectively cater for the safety of pedestrians, who make up the majority of road users.

We want Kura to ensure that the contractor does not vacate the site before putting safety measures in place,” said Waithaka.



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