A storm endlessly claiming lives. Our beloved pearl of Africa, Uganda our motherland ranked 6th in the world as one with the highest rates of road accidents, with over 1.446 billion cars in the world and an estimated 2,302,021 in Uganda as of 2022. Many are being laid to rest, hundreds in dear condition but for how long will this go on and on? Statistics of traffic police show that in the first 15 days of May 2022, 176 people had died in 113 road accidents. These same accidents left 659 people injured and many in severe condition. 2022 was a year that claimed so many on roads but the plea is to make 2023 a better year and reduce greatly the risks of death and disability by accidents.

Many times we ignore the fact that we all have an equal role to play and many times we turn a deaf ear to this matter of significance.

Listen then, Care, Caution, Consideration, Common sense and Courtesy also commonly called The five C’s of road safety can be regarded as a building block on one’s role in promoting road safety.

1) Care

First and foremost, Care, for example don’t use your mobile phone while driving, always belt up, and slow down especially in busy areas, among others. Care calls for you and me to always be careful as we make our way through the roads, be you a pedestrian or motorist, care by minding your surroundings. It could be a log in the middle of the road or even a ball that has rolled through from a neighboring compound, always care enough to break or even stop and roll it out, care by cutting out distractions, denounce receiving phone calls while driving, reading newspapers or even texting a friend on WhatsApp. With this you actually do care, first about yourself then about your fellow road users.

2) Caution

Secondly is Caution, closely related to care though not the same. Caution calls on all of us road users to take extra effort to avoid causing accidents. Fellow pedestrians be cautious enough to look to your right, then left and right again and only cross if the road is clear, always seek to make use of the zebra crossing especially in urban areas, and always move on the right side just to help give you a clear view of what is coming ahead of you rather than being at risk of what is coming at the back. Dear drivers be cautious of the road signs that constantly enlighten you of what is required of you as the person behind the steering wheel.

3) Consideration

Moving right ahead is Consideration, all road users are called upon to bear a high level of thoughtfulness and sensitivity towards other road users, this is not only to drivers as one may think but also to the pedestrians. As drivers are called upon to be considerate by driving at a manageable speed, showing direction by putting indicators, driving cars that are in proper conditions among others. Pedestrians also have to be considerate to the drivers as well by carefully moving on the road rather than playing on them, moving on the right side of the road, crossing only when the road is clear and so on, being considerate is a key factor in the fight to promote road safety.

4) Common sense

My and your role in road safety still goes on by asking us to use Common sense on the roads. Why drive at 100km per hour in an urban centre? Why run into the road if you know there could be a car speeding through any second? Why let a text distract your attention off the road and yet it can be seen and replied at a later time? Why ride at the speed of light only to spend six months on a hospital bed? It only calls for common sense and the roads will be safe of the rampant accidents that are claiming lives every single day.

5) Courtesy

The final ‘C’ of road safety is Courtesy, something as simple as being polite enough to do something. Have the courtesy to slow down and let people cross the road, a few seconds lost are better than hours or days in a police cell. Have the courtesy to maintain the speed limit for your own good and the good of others, be polite enough to adhere to the traffic lights which guide you on when to drive through or ask you to wait for your fellow road users to do the same. The roads on which we move, the roads on which we drive are not personalized and so we are called upon to be polite enough to let others use the roads along with us.

The five C’s of road safety are a clear guide and they highlight “My and your role” in road safety. Be Careful, Take Caution, Be Considerate, Use Common sense and always have Courtesy. With these at our finger tips, our roads will be a safe haven to every road user.