The National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) has expressed concern over the high level of non-compliance to traffic rules by road users in Nyanza. The authority, which is currently leading a crack-down on road offenders in the area, has already impounded over 50 public service vehicles and arrested their crews. NTSA officers conducted more swoops in Ahero, Maseno and Bondo yesterday to arrest those flouting traffic rules. Addressing the Press in Kisumu yesterday, NTSA Deputy Director Cosmas Ngeso cited the low level of awareness and defiance by some motorists as some of the reasons why violation of traffic regulations was rampant in the region.
He said some matatu and bus operators had since pulled their vehicles off the roads to avoid inspection. “It is sad that people are still using Probox vehicles for public transport even after this was banned. These laws are meant to protect road users, not punish anybody,” said Mr Ngeso. According to Ngeso, some of the common traffic offences in the area include failing to belong to Saccos (for PSVs), lack of speed governors, overloading and use of unauthorised vehicles for public transport. no helmets He said the use of Probox cars was especially common along the Kisii-Homa Bay route, where they are the main means of transport. “We have also noted with concern the high number of motorcyclists operating without helmets and reflectors while others insist on carrying more than one passenger,” said Ngeso. NTSA and the area traffic department have pitched tent in Kisumu, Siaya, Homa Bay, Kisii, Migori and Kakamega counties to smoke out the traffic offenders. He said the authority required all motorists to take their vehicles for inspection and warned that those who failed to do so would be arrested and prosecuted.
The region has always resisted traffic crack-downs, with even residents joining matatu and bus operators in their defiance. Ngeso said the current crack-down was professionally done, adding that most motorists were co-operating with the traffic officials. Kisumu County Traffic Commandant Joshua Omukata said they were committed to ensuring that all motorists complied with traffic regulations. “I would wish to urge all road users to respect traffic laws,” he said.