Minister of Works and Transport Rohan Sinanan is boasting of “significant and positive” strides in road safety as police report a decline in fatal road traffic accidents between 2018 and 2021.
Sinanan was delivering the feature address at Arrive Alive’s 8th annual road safety awards ceremony on Tuesday, when 116 people, including police officers, ambulance personnel, fire officers and team members at the ministry, were recognised for their commitment and efforts.
The event took place virtually and was streamed live on Arrive Alive’s Facebook page.
The minister said statistics from the police have shown a downward trend in road fatalities.
“With 110 in 2018, 102 in 2019, 88 in 2020 and 69 in 2021 – these figures are clear examples of what we can achieve when there is a commitment to action.”
He said Arrive Alive has proven itself a worthy ally in advocacy and public education.
“I applaud their ongoing contributions in helping to change the road traffic culture of drivers and pedestrians in TT. Initiatives such as these demonstrate leadership and encourage others to take action, particularly given the urgency of effective road-injury prevention.”
He said as a society, TT is at a crossroads, adding that the situation must be arrested or else it would continue to diminish the country's productivity and potential.
Sinanan said, driven by "the need to effect change over the past five years, the Ministry of Works and Transport has spearheaded a new age in the realm of traffic management and road safety.”
It is developing a comprehensive national transport master plan which will synchronise all transport efforts with the aim of promoting greater road, land and sea safety, he said. It is also currently undertaking an internal road assessment programme with the objective of improving the safety of the road network.
Acting Deputy Commissioner of Police – Operations Joanne Archie told recipients they had continued to operate with excellence in upholding the highest standards of road safety through their enforcement, policy implementation and rescue efforts over the past year. She added that because of this, the police recorded 22 per cent decreases in fatalities in 2021.
“I look forward to further reductions in 2022 as your enforcement, monitoring and response methods are refined and improved to better serve our road users.”
She told them to "continue to incorporate road traffic safety awareness and education campaigns into your mandates as we need to constantly remind citizens of their responsibilities as road users.
"Your conversations with errant motorists must elicit real behavioural change by explaining to them what could have been the consequences of their unlawful actions. Your interactions with victims and their families place you in a unique position to effect change in others.”