Federal Road Safety Corps has warned fun-seekers to avoid driving under the influence of alcohol and to ensure compliance with traffic rules and regulations to prevent road crashes associated with the Valentine Day celebration.
The corps noted that with a high number of crashes recorded on Valentine Day, there was the need to caution motorists, especially youths who engage in drink driving.
A statement by the Corps Public Education Officer, Jonas Agwu, on Tuesday, said statistics of road crashes during Valentine celebration in the last three years had been very dismal.
Agwu said, “For instance, between February 12 and 18, 2008, there were 268 road crashes with 33 fatal, 175 minor, which resulted in 86 deaths and 551 with various degrees of injuries.
“In 2009, a total of 187 road crashes were recorded, with 30 fatal, 109 serious, 48 minor resulting in 99 deaths and 527 with various degree of injuries, while 2010 posted a total of 227 crashes with 53 fatal, 139 serious and 35 minor all resulting 70 deaths and 661 others with several degrees of injuries.”
To reverse the trend, Agwu said a series of advocacy programmes had been designed to complement the corps’ special monitoring of drinking joints and clubs on Thursday (tomorrow) as part of measures to ensure responsible drinking among motorists.
He added that the agency had held meetings with members of the Hotel Owners’ Association on the need for the safety of motorists, who patronise them on Valentine Day.
He added, “Specifically, the corps wishes to draw the attention of the motoring public to the negative impact of drunk driving which often results in blackouts, euphoria, poor co-ordination, balance impairment, poor judgement, impaired memory and slow reaction among drivers under the influence of alcohol.”
Meanwhile, President Goodluck Jonathan will be among dignitaries expected to grace an international conference, which forms part of this year’s silver jubilee celebration of the FRSC in Abuja on February 18.