Non-compliant PSVs seized in police crackdown on unroadworthy vehicles
The National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) officers together with the traffic police have kicked off the latest round of traffic crackdown meant to contain rising road carnage.
The nationwide crackdown on motor vehicles that are violating traffic laws and regulations saw officers from multiple agencies setting up roadblocks on Monday morning and asking motorists to present official documents for inspection.
This operation, titled Road Safety Clinic, is part of a directive that was issued by Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen on Wednesday, April 19, 2023.
Mr Murkomen tasked NTSA to ensure all private and public service vehicles are compliant with the Traffic (Amendment) Act, 2017, including no school transportation between 10pm and5 am, and that students must be allocated seats with functional seatbelts.
The CS also ordered immediate enforcement of anti-roll construction, installation of safety belts and proper seat anchorage on all PSVs.
In addition, the NTSA was directed to finalise system integrations between it and the insurance sector for real-time data sharing to assist with compliance and enforcement.
The CS also directed that all motor vehicles with expired inspection certificates be presented to the nearest NTSA centre within one month for a reassessment of their roadworthiness.
The NTSA on their part has responded to this directive by setting up the Safety Clinic, which will assess the vehicles on the road and ensure the safety of travellers, particularly school-going children.
The NTSA also stated that vehicles that fail to comply will be issued with a prohibition order and booked for compliance inspection at the NTSA inspection centre.
NTSA’s latest action comes following an increase in the number of road accidents across the country
Drivers of PSVs are expected to present their national IDs as well as their valid licenses, while conductors will provide their IDs.
According to NTSA, the crew is also required to produce a speed limiter certificate for the specific vehicle in which they are operating in.
The authority further explained that the Safety Clinic exercise of inspecting the vehicles while on the road will ensure the safety of travelers, including school-going children.
“The clinic is a multi-agency initiative and is free of charge,” NTSA said while assuring motorists that the exercise will not consume much of their time.
The Safety Clinic was also assessing behaviour and attitude change among road users and improved road safety compliance by PSV, commercial vehicles and boda boda operators.
“All public service vehicles and commercial vehicles (tare weight of 3049Kgs and above) must operate with functional speed limiters,” NTSA added.
Last month, the Cabinet directed NTSA and the National Police Service to rein in rogue drivers on the roads.
While expressing concern over the rising cases of road accidents in the country, the Cabinet asked all the relevant authorities to take remedial action and enforce the Road Traffic Act.
The Cabinet, which met at State House on Tuesday, noted that recklessness on the roads has led to the loss of many lives on Kenyan roads.
It stressed the need to enforce the Road Traffic Act in a manner that enhances road safety, especially during the long rainy season.
The directive comes after three accidents that claimed the lives of at least 23 people, including six students, in less than 72 hours.
On his part, Inspector General of Police Japheth Koome blamed the accidents on careless driving.
According to transport stakeholders, most accidents are caused by recklessness, speeding, overloading and the use of unroadworthy vehicles.
As part of its efforts, from June 1, 2023 drivers of PSVs and commercial vehicles will undergo various retests to ensure that they are fit to operate their services.
“It will be mandatory for drivers to undergo a driver retest upon renewal of their licences,” he said.