Various road traffic accidents that occurred in the Upper West Region in 2017 claimed a total of 61 lives resulting in an increase from the 54 persons that were killed in 2016.
Total number of fatal cases also increased from 48 in 2016 to 54 in 2017 while total number of persons injured again increased from 240 to 276 respectively.
Mr. Mohammed Abdul-Samad, Upper West Regional Manager of the National Road Safety Commission (NRSC) disclosed this at a press briefing in Wa on Wednesday.
Total number of serious cases decreased from 72 cases in 2016 to 53 cases in 2017, he said adding that total number of minor cases however increased from 39 to 43 in respectively.
He said total number of cases reported however decreased from 159 cases in 2016 to 147 cases in 2017 with total number of vehicles involved also decreasing from 246 to 221 respectively.
He disclosed that the total number of pedestrian knockdowns also decreased from 30 cases in 2016 to 16 cases in 2017.
Mr. Abdul-Samad explained that the closure of the Yapei and Buipe bridges on Wednesday, November 22, 2017 to vehicular traffic to make way for rehabilitation could account for the increase in some of the statistics recorded in the region for 2017.
He explained further that the closure of the bridges forced a diversion of vehicular traffic through the Upper West Region, thereby, increasing pressure on the roads leading to some accidents.
The NRSC Upper West Regional Manager said before then, the region had recorded a decrease in all categories of the statistics, adding that but for the diversion they would not have been any significant changes in the statistics.
Mr. Abdul-Samad was happy that there was a significant decrease in pedestrian knockdown and attributed it to the intensified public and institutional education and sensitisation campaign activities carried out by the Commission especially in schools during the year.
He cited interference in the enforcement of road traffic regulations as one of the major challenges in the region and pleaded with political leadership and other influential persons in society to desist from the act to allow adequate enforcement for public compliance.
Mr. Abdul-Samad said the Commission would continue to carry out its education and sensitisation campaigns in the region to ensure public awareness and compliance with road traffic regulations so that lives and property would be protected for a better society.