These accidents have been predominantly attributed to various factors, including drivers’ inattention, failure to maintain a safe following distance, and overspeeding, accounting for 31%, 15%, and 13% of the accidents, respectively.
Furthermore, incidents involving obstructing vehicles attempting to overtake or violating zebra crossings made up 12% of the accidents, while 9% resulted from a failure to stay within designated lanes. Illegal overtaking contributed to 8% of the accidents, and a significant 7% and 5% were linked to drunk driving and the non-use of wing mirrors, respectively.
Looking back to 2018, just a year before the launch of the Gerayo Amahoro campaign by the Police aimed at enhancing road safety, the country reported a staggering 5,000 accidents that tragically claimed the lives of 700 individuals and left 2,000 injured. During the same period, over Rwf 200 billion were disbursed in insurance claims to compensate for more than 3,000 properties damaged in these accidents.
However, the launch of the Gerayo Amahoro campaign in the subsequent year yielded encouraging results. Between May and December of that year, road accidents saw a significant 25% reduction when compared to the preceding year.
Speaking to IGIHE, RNP Spokesperson ACP Boniface Rutikanga emphasized that preventing accidents lies within the power of drivers, who can make safer choices by strictly adhering to traffic regulations.
"Road accidents are preventable. They primarily occur due to poor decisions made by some drivers. Operating a vehicle entails not only its physical movement but also the responsible observance of all traffic rules, consideration for fellow road users, and the avoidance of behaviors that may contribute to accidents," Rutikanga affirmed.
Furthermore, it is crucial to note that bicycles and motorbikes collectively accounted for a substantial 53% of these accidents, with bicycles being responsible for 41% of all recorded accidents.