Saturday, March 12, 2011

Road Fatalities Fall in Morocco

According to a report by Siham Ali for Magharebia in Rabat, there has been a big improvement in road deaths in Morocco. This is welcome news as over recent years the road toll has been far too high
Road deaths have dropped by almost one-fifth since the introduction of the Moroccan Highway Code three months ago, according to Infrastructure Ministry data.

The controversial legislation, passed in October 2010, imposed stiffer penalties on drivers who break the law and created a points system to maintain order on the roads.

"Previously, people weren't really concerned about fines, which were never more than 400 dirhams," Siham Ouardnai, a bank clerk, said. "Now the fines have almost doubled. On top of that, drivers are really scared of losing points."

"My behaviour's changed, and so has my husband's. He's become much more careful, but before, he loved speeding," she said.

The enforcement of the code has made the roads safer, encouraging people to behave more responsibly, Infrastructure Minister Karim Ghellab said at a February 14th press conference to mark the national road security day.

According to Ghellab, the number of accidents fell by 17.5%, serious injuries decreased by 14.92% and minor injuries dropped by 19.16%. Still, the minister stressed the need for on-going vigilance to ensure that road accident statistics continue to decrease.

Extra measures were put in place to implement the law, including vehicle speed checks with fixed radar detectors, professional driving licences and a new examination of driving school instructors.

You can read more here: Magharebia

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