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Inter-Ministerial Joint Press Statement on Road Safety

In the last couple of weeks, Kenya has witnessed preventable deaths through tragic road crashes. I take this opportunity to condole with the families and friends of the people we have lost on our roads, and wish a quick recovery to those recuperating in hospitals.

Road crashes cause immense suffering to the affected families, and every possible measure must be taken to stop the carnage.

A vast majority of these accidents are preventable if road users change their behaviour. Actions such as speeding, dangerous overtaking, drunken-driving, overloading, driver fatigue and crossing roads without due care are common causes of road crashes. Every road user must be aware of the consequences of their actions. Over and above this, they must take responsibility for their safety and that of others.

The Ministry of Roads and Transport, alongside the Ministry of Interior and National Administration, continues to step up efforts through a multi-pronged strategy with special attention to public education and risk-targeted enforcement. Evidence-based enforcement targeting risk factors with the support of technology has been on:

1. Speed monitoring of PSVs and commercial vehicles

2. Enforcement on overloading of goods and excess passengers

3. Weeding out PSVs contravening licensed routes

4. Conducting anti-drink driving operations

5. Removal of unlawful lights on motor vehicles

6. Verification of NTSA-issued licences, including Driving Licences and Road Service Licences

7. Weeding out unroadworthy vehicles, and

8. PSV Sacco compliance assessment

Additionally, two weeks ago, we appointed 228 individuals to join County Transport and Safety Committees (CTSCs) and help drive enforcement in 38 counties. Appointments to the remaining nine counties will be made in the coming days. This week, the National Police Service (NPS) will appoint county traffic enforcement coordinators to complement the work of CTSCs.

To prevent accidents and protect lives, we hereby issue further directives as follows:

a. School transportation: As public engagements on the Draft Traffic (School Transport) Rules 2024 advance, all learning institutions are required to present their vehicles for inspection by 1st May 2024 to assess their mechanical soundness and whether speed limiters installed on them are functional. School vehicles carrying children are restricted to operate between 6am and 7pm.

b. Compliance with KS 2295 – 2018: Immediate compliance with KS 2295 – 2018 on maximum road speed limiters for motor vehicles to ensure speed limiters fitted on PSVs and commercial vehicles are functional, limiting speed, storing data, transmitting speed data every five seconds and onboarded onto the NTSA Intelligent Road Safety Management System (IRSMS):

1. All institutions and companies are required to present their vehicles for compliance checks with the relevant speed limiter vendors within 14 days, failing which all NTSA-issued licences will be invalidated.

2. All PSVs (7-seater and above) and commercial vehicles with tare weight of 3,048kg and above will be presented for compliance checks with the relevant speed limiter vendors within 30 days, failing which all NTSA-issued licences will be rendered invalid.

3. Night enforcement: The NPS and the National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) will heighten night enforcement and random checks along major highways, with a focus on blackspots. They should also ensure that stalled vehicles are removed from roads at the cost of owners.

4. PSV routes: The NTSA is directed to immediately cease issuance of new PSV operator routes, review all existing routes issued to PSV operators and issue new routes only upon vetting of the operators.

5. Short-term PSV licences: Issuance of short-term PSV licences has been suspended until reviews of all PSV routes are completed.

6. Illegal PSVs: The NPS will impound all vehicles operating without the required licences, and charge the owner and driver in line with the Traffic Act.

7. Fatigue management: Drivers must adhere to the stipulated 8-hour working shift per the regulations. Saccos whose drivers are involved in accidents and are found to have been on the road longer that the stipulated working hours will have their operator licences and vehicle insurance suspended.

8. Excess passengers: Excess passengers, drivers and conductors will be detained and charged. We appeal to the Judiciary to mete out the highest possible penalties to traffic offenders, including riders, pedestrians, drivers and passengers.

9. Compliance by transport operators: Transport operators not meeting the minimum requirement of PSV Regulations 2014, i.e. the minimum threshold of serviceable vehicles, non-compliance with road service licences, inspection certificate and PSV licences are hereby suspended.

10. Compliance of speed limiter vendors: Speed limiter vendors with low performance in speed management are suspended from fitting new gadgets until an assessment by the NTSA is completed. However, they will be expected to maintain 100% compliance on vehicles already fitted with the limiters.

11. Boda boda and pedestrian safety: County Governments and the NPS will enforce all relevant sections of the Traffic Act to ensure compliance and safeguard lives.

12. Road agencies: Relevant Road agencies are instructed to immediately undertake roads markings, install necessary furniture and put in place measures to remove stalled vehicles. Additionally, they are required to mount speed calming measures and ensure black spots are attended to.

13. The NTSA is instructed to hasten the process of outsourcing motor vehicle inspection to enhance its capacity in assessing the roadworthiness of vehicles countrywide.

Our law enforcement officers tirelessly serve our great nation. Unfortunately, for far too long, minimal investment has been directed to resourcing the Traffic Police to undertake their mandate. The Government will direct more resources to the enforcement function in order to address capacity building, acquisition of equipment including enforcement devices and adoption of the latest technology.

As these measures are put in place alongside those currently being implemented, the NTSA will continue providing technical support to the NPS and further intensify the Usalama Barabarani programme to support behaviour and attitude change. We note that with positive behaviour change, Kenya can reduce the number of fatalities by at least 50%.

We urge all road users and stakeholders to support the Government as measures aimed at restoring sanity on our roads are implemented.

𝑈𝑠𝑎𝑙𝑎𝑚𝑎 𝐵𝑎𝑟𝑎𝑏𝑎𝑟𝑎𝑛𝑖 𝑛𝑖 𝑗𝑢𝑘𝑢𝑚𝑢 𝑙𝑒𝑡𝑢 𝑠𝑜𝑡𝑒. Let us all work together to make our roads safe.

Hon. Kipchumba Murkomen, EGH.

Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Roads and Transport

Tuesday, 9th April 2024