The National Road Safety Authority (NRSA) has issued a cautionary advisory urging drivers to exercise vigilance and adopt safety measures to mitigate the heightened risks of crashes resulting from poor visibility during the harmattan season.
In a statement released by the Authority, it highlighted the adverse effects of the prevailing harmattan weather, characterized by dry and dusty winds leading to reduced visibility on roads. The statement emphasized the need for motorists to adapt their driving behaviour accordingly to ensure road safety.
The NRSA advised drivers to take the following precautions:
Reduce Speed and Drive with Caution: Drivers were urged to slow down, especially in areas with low visibility, and exercise caution to avoid accidents.
Maintain Safe Distance: Keeping a safe distance between vehicles allows for sudden stops and reduces the risk of collisions.
Use Headlights and Fog Lights: Utilizing headlights and fog lights when necessary enhances visibility, making it easier for drivers to see other vehicles and pedestrians.
Avoid Sudden Maneuvers: Drivers were cautioned against sudden braking or acceleration, which could lead to accidents, especially in poor visibility conditions.
Observe Traffic Signs and Markings: Motorists were reminded to pay attention to traffic signs and construction warnings, using them as guides for safe navigation.
Keep Windows and Mirrors Clean: Ensuring clean windows and mirrors enhances visibility, reducing the risk of accidents.
Avoid Excessive Speeding and Overtaking: Excessive speeding and unnecessary overtaking increase the likelihood of accidents, particularly in reduced visibility conditions.
Additionally, the NRSA advised drivers to use advance warning triangles in the event of vehicle breakdowns, placing them at a distance of at least 45 meters from the faulty vehicle. Owners of broken-down vehicles were reminded to promptly tow their vehicles from the roads within stipulated timeframes.
Pedestrians were also cautioned to exercise caution while walking along roads during the harmattan season.
Furthermore, road contractors were advised to wet road surfaces at construction sites and erect appropriate signs to ensure safety in work zones.
The NRSA's advisory underscores the importance of proactive measures and heightened vigilance by all road users to enhance safety amidst challenging weather conditions.