By Abubakarr Harding
In a new development, members of the Civil Society Consortium on Community Accountability and Service Delivery have called on the Government to set aside a statutory post-crash fund that will be used to speedily respond to victims of crashes within record time.
William Sao-Lamin , Chairman of the Consortium, during a news conference held at the YMCA Hall on Fort Street in Freetown on July 7th, 2022, stated that road safety has been a serious challenge for road users.
He continued that they are calling on all insurance companies to pay ten percent of the money they are receiving as vehicle, Kekeh and Okada insurance fees to the fund maintaining how failure to adhere to road safety measures often result to fetal crashes on the road.
“Road crashes statistics are unbelievable and these crashes are caused for poverty disability and fatality. They most often leave the traveling public with injuries that normally affects them for the rest of their lives,” Sao-Lamin said adding that it impacts on the country’s development agenda, the loss of lives, the degree of injury inflicted on victims, financial loss relating to medical and maintenance cost associated with accidents are enormous.
He said it is due to these factors that they have decided to engage the SLRSA, the Sierra Leone Insurance Company and the insurance industry to establish strategic partnership to mitigate human suffering on the roads.
“We are calling on Government through SLRSA to establish, sustain and equip post-crash care units to mitigate the sufferings of accident victims and minimize crash fatalities. We are calling on SLRSA to coordinate all stakeholders including the Sierra Leone Insurance Commission to come together to achieve greater synergy in establishing the Unit,” he emphasized.
In his contribution, SLRSA Research Manager, Ambrose Tucker lauded the Consortium for the initiative that seeks to reduce deaths during accidents. He said the Authority was established to regulate and coordinate development in the road sector adding how they have established several Units including fitness test for vehicles before licenses are issued, inspect and supervise vehicle repairs among others. He called for the development of pre-hospital care system including the extraction of victims from a vehicle after an accident. He said there is need to establish a hospital trauma system and evaluate quality care, provide early rehabilitation support to injured patients among others.
“There is need to establish an insurance scheme to finance the rehabilitation for crash victims,” he recommended.