President Benigno Aquino has signed a road safety decree as the country joins a global campaign to curb road accidents. The landmark UN resolution—proposed to the UN by the Federation Internationale de I’Autmobile (FIA), the European Union and other international organizations and institutions—was endorsed by UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and signed by around 100 governments. Question for me is it going to get some sort of UN or EU funding which makes the power of the pen ever more valuable.
Because from the majority of accidents I have either seen or read about as well as driving on the roads we are in the realms of stating the obvious in most cases. Most accidents are down to poor maintenance and or bad driving. In the cities maybe there can be a huge reduction in accidents but in the provinces its a bit more of a game of cat and mouse where most motorcycle users don’t wear helmets, own a license or in many cases haven’t even registered their vehicles in some time. Which if they are prepared to do that how good is the maintenance? We have had buses drop off cliffs due to bad driving and poor brakes, cars running into crowds due to brake failure yet these are the most basic of maintenance and repairs never mind the fact the buses were a public use vehicle which should have strong maintenance for obvious reasons on such treacherous roads. Add to that the speeding habits of buses and trucks which resulted in a head on collision outside South General hospital in Naga you start to think an introduction of common sense would be nice. I remember watching the news story after the bus crash outside the hospital where over 30 people died the drivers of the company on other routes at the depot were laughing and joking saying passengers are always telling them to go faster.. really?? how does that work on a plane or even in a fast food restaurant would you give them a raw burger?
I may sound cynical on this but from the accidents I have seen most involve larger vehicles hitting motorcycles or other road users its common sense that is missing in most cases. Maintenance common sense, as it guarantees reliability of the vehicle and a reduced rate of wear and tear. Driving too fast common sense adapt to your road conditions. Driving on the wrong side of the road just because your bigger than other vehicles, common sense and data done in other countries show the difference of time gained is minimal but also the risk of crashing increases drastically with the increase of speed. To change the roads in the Philippines your going to have to change peoples attitudes and that is one thing people never seem to be keen to do, myself, the government and many many other people have tried it has become an acceptable thing that everyone is different which for me gives me steam out of the ears. At the same time you need to fix this from the children at school and adult educational classes to force the changes. A simple influx of foreign money and fines for breaking seatbelt rules etc. will make no difference whatsoever.