EDITORIAL: Road safety paramount this Christmas
ALL Barbadians, please exercise some extra care and caution on our local roads and our busy highways, during this hectic holiday season.
Without a doubt, this is the time of year when the roads will be heavy with traffic as the busy Christmas period gets under way. Unfortunately however, it is during this time of year that Barbadians tend to seemingly throw any defensive driving skills they have acquired out the window, as they dash here and there. This is not the time, however, to be absentminded.
We all know the damage distracted driving can cause. And while great focus has been placed on the use of mobile phones whilst driving, as well as the use and abuse of alcohol, we can be sure that a fair share of accidents may have been caused due to the driver having a distracted mind. Your thoughts may be elsewhere and before you know it, that car bumper inches closer and closer and then in a moment’s notice, you kiss the automobile in front of you.
A few persons have to date written off their vehicles because they were deep in thought thinking or worrying about something, while traversing on our local roads. Others have done so while scurrying to and fro. It just goes to show that we as Barbadians must be totally focused on the road at all times, because accidents can happen in a split second.
Driving around Barbados, motorists who are observant will see that the Barbados Road Safety Association (BRSA) has placed markers in the form of crosses, with a “Drive Safely” message attached, at key points and locations where there have been road fatalities. These markers serve as a critical reminder for us all to take it easy on the road, reduce speeding and drive with due care and attention. These markers are hard to ignore because once viewed, they will aid drivers in calling to mind whatever accident or incident that took place in or around that spot. This should cause us all to ponder on the frailty of life.
That said, it would be nice to see a reduction in road accidents and fatalities during this holiday period. That would be one less thing for us as a nation to worry about.
So for those drivers who love Christmas alcoholic beverages, please designate a driver to get you to and from your events. For those who have to work late or who have to work long hours, also do the same or get some rest before you get behind the wheel.
For those pedestrians engaged in the Christmas hustle and bustle, please be careful and adhere to the traffic signs and signals and use sidewalks where possible. For motorcyclists and bicyclists, please do not weave in and out of traffic wildly and no silly stunts. Also, for all motorists in general, please remember to drive at a decent speed, use signals to indicate your actions and do not take chances speeding or overtaking when it is unsafe.
We all have to play our part. Drive safely and Happy Holidays!