Transport Ministry targets 'bikers’ out west
Transport Minister Mike Henry, personnel from his ministry, the Island Traffic Authority, and the police met with several motorcycle operators in Orange Bay, Hanover, last week as part of an outreach programme aimed at encouraging best practices among motorcyclists.
Kenute Hare, director of Road Safety in the ministry, explained that the programme, which will target motorcyclist across the island, is geared at encouraging them to use the road safely and be compliant with all requirements for them to use the road.
Pointing out that close to 60 per cent of the road users killed on the road network across the island last year were motorcyclists from western Jamaica, Hare described the area as 'the bike Mecca of Jamaica', adding that most of the motorcycles in the island are located in this belt.
ROAD SAFETY BATTLE
"The road safety battle is won or lost from the west. We will know whether or not we get below or above 300 (deaths from road accidents) by what we do in the west, and when I speak of the west, I mean from Trelawny to St Elizabeth," stated Hare.
"Be mindful of the fact that so far, this year, 19 persons have been killed; of the 19 killed, seven were motorcyclist, so we are not doing as well as we should have been doing," Hare emphasised.
He explained that the programme was born out of concern about the safety of riders and pillion passengers, who are equally in danger when they are not properly attired while using the motor cycles along the roadways.
Approximately 379 persons were killed in road accidents across the island last year, 117 of which were motorcyclists, the majority of whom were from western Jamaica.