By Bernard Quanson.
Care Drive Foundation, a welfare Organization which works towards the welfare of commercial drivers, mates and their families, has organized a one day seminar on road safety and how to go about the driving profession with dignity.
The seminar which was attended by Executives of Tiger Transport Services Association and other TransportUnions, took place at Kasoa in the Central Region.
Speaking on Road Safety and Discipline, an Accra Based Legal Practitioner, Alfred G. K . Obour , stated that every driver has to be trained well in driving and has to possess a valid license to avoid having problems with the law and the police.
Lawyer Obour noted that drivers have to be disciplined. He said they have to avoid alcoholic drinks whilst driving, adding that it is also not safe to sniff asra or any hard drug before sitting behind the steering wheel to drive.
The lawyer, said further that drivers have to wear shoes and not slippers, when driving.
Mr Obour, urged drivers to be honest to their car owners, so that they will have confidence in them and also keep the vehicles with the drivers to work for a long time.
He said, drivers have to avoid dangerous overtaking that we see on our roads all the time.
He stressed that vehicles have to be taken to workshop for regular maintenance to ensure that they are worthy to be on the road, especially the brakes.
The lawyer, advised them to take some time to rest and eat well to nourish themselves.
He said, one key area that drivers need to invest in, is insurance so that it will serve as security for them, when they grow old and even whilst still young.
Lawyer Obour, further told the drivers to have time to acquaint themselves with the dos and the don’ts of the profession, and abide by them, so that they can avoid periodic arrests by the police.
He said, if drivers would abide by the law and poses all the documents and items required , no police officer, can harass them in the course of their work, adding that drivers, have the rights guaranteed by law to work freely on the roads without harassment, if only they obey the law.
Touching on alleged harassment of commercial drivers at the Achimota overhead in Accra, Mr Obour noted that Lawyers should write officially to the Ghana Highway Authority, the Assembly Taskforce that operates out there , and the Tesano Police Commander among others, to address the issue once and for all.
He said, there are so many bad things that are done to drivers, such as towing vehicles, whilst drivers and passengers are in the vehicle .
He noted that, if drivers do the right thing, there will be no need to give money to the police as bribe.
He said, drivers have to consider making Insurance Policy for their children so that they do not go through too much stress when their wards are due for higher education.
He said if drivers get triangle, first aid box, fire band , ,spare tyre ,license , etc. no police would arrest them or be taken to be taken to Court.
He advised them to be careful with passengers as some influential persons, can disguised themselves to be in trotro or Taxi.
On his part, the Founder of Care Drive Foundation, Kwesi Botchway , pointed out that most of the problems that drivers face are due to disunity. He advised them, not to cheat on car owners by not making regular sales to them.
He advised that, any time that car owners need the services of drivers, they should meet transport unions to get them credible drivers for professional work to be done for them. He said governments cheat driver who he noted contributes so much to the national cake but they do not benefit much from the huge tolls money, for example that they pay to the state on daily basis.
Mr Botchway noted that there are not many bus stops and service lanes on the George Bush Highway and that something has to be done urgently to address the problem.
He concluded that ignorance is not an excuse of the law, drivers need to be trained and retrained on ethics of the transportation business and its technical and vocational aspects regularly to promote safety on our roads.
PICTURE…….The Minister of Transport, Hon.Kweku Ofori Asiamah .