Mon | Jan 21, 2019

Slow pokes causing accidents

Published:Friday | January 2, 2015 | 12:00 AM

The Editor, Sir:

Almost every year at this time, we bemoan the number of people killed on our roads, and while I have no proof that improper driving on multi-lane highways is a cause of fatal accidents, it's just a matter of time.

Every time I visit the Kingston or St Catherine areas, I am astounded by the way motorists use the Mandela Highway and the three-lane Portmore toll road. But it's probably not their fault, as I cannot remember any educational campaign being undertaken to enlighten them.

It's a simple equation. In a situation like Jamaica, where we drive on the left, on multi-lane highways/roads, the convention is that slower vehicles keep in the left lane and the other lane/lanes are clear for overtaking (vehicles travelling faster).

Just check any afternoon on the Mandela Highway or any morning/evening on the Portmore toll road and see how many drivers are making dangerous manoeuvres to get by slower-moving vehicles which are sitting in the passing lane, sometimes three vehicles abreast. It's mind-numbing.

The National Road Safety Council needs to find the funds to finance a public-education campaign (maybe for six months) to educate the motoring public in this regard. And for the first six weeks, they could work with members of the Police Traffic Division to reinforce this.

Jamaicans are by nature impatient, and anything that can be done to prevent dangerous driving and taking chances in trying to overtake should be looked at. This is a simple and straightforward one.

Stephen Harrison

St Mary