The Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) said 74 of its officers lost their lives to reckless drivers while performing their official duties across the country in the last 18 months.
As part of measures to check the menace of reckless driving, the commission is seeking stiffer punishment for users of mobile telephones while on the wheels.
The Corps Marshal, Mr. Boboye Oyeyemi, who called for an upward review of fines payable by defaulters, said a minimum fine of N50, 000 to N100,000 would serve best as deterrence to those violating the law, rather than the “paltry” sum currently being demanded.
Boboye spoke at the Haulage and Logistics Magazine Annual Conference and Exhibition (HULMACE) held in Lagos.
The corps marshal said the commission would stop at nothing to bring the killer drivers to justice.
“Already, there are efforts before the National Assembly to jerk up the fine payable for a phone user while on the wheels.
What is currently obtainable cannot do the work, but when you have to pay N50, 000 to N100, 000 for using your phone while driving, then we will get somewhere.
“In the last 18 months, I have lost about 74 lives. We will not stop at ensuring the prosecution of those errand drivers.
It is my responsibility to ensure the safety of my personnel on the highway, so if you knock down my personnel and you are running away, I will go after you.”
Boboye said it was discovered during
the last Sallah patrols that about 30 per cent of the drivers of articulated vehicles could not see at night.
“During the last Sallah, we observed that most drivers did not see well at night, it was the motor boys that drove them.
“So, we conducted vision test on the highway and motor parks and we
observed that 30 percent of the articulated vehicle drivers had vision problem, a situation that is also contributing to the crashes.
“When drivers have vision problem, they should go to optometrist who will refer them to optamlogist to correct their sights.
We are also talking to them on the need to have speed limit control on their vehicles.
The price has come down to N15,000 so the noise about cost isn’t valid anymore.”
Boboye also said a great number of drivers did not know how to drive,
blasting driving schools for not leaving up to expectation.
“We presently have 1,450 registered driving schools and over 500 were suspended due to malpractices and not following the process.”
Earlier, the Managing Director of A&A Global Leasing Services, Mrs. Oluwaseye Yomi-Sholoye, had called on governments at all levels to rehabilitate roads, noting that the state of the roads was causing untold hardships.