Zambian school road speed initiative launch supported through Child Health Initiative
A new initiative targeting vehicle speeds around schools has launched in Kitwe, Zambia, supported by the FIA Foundation’s Child Health Initiative and local partners Zambia Motor Sport Association and the Zambia Road Safety Trust.
In Zambia, it is estimated that over 3,500 road traffic fatalities occur each year. To reduce road traffic deaths and injuries in Kitwe, the city is focusing on safer journeys to school for children by reducing vehicle speeds and separating students from traffic with infrastructure improvements. Raised zebra crossings, rumble strips, footpaths, bollards and signage are simple but effective measures that are proven to save children's lives by reducing the speed of motorized transport.
To demonstrate the city’s commitment to road safety, Kitwe Mayor Mpansa Mwaya inaugurated the first infrastructure changes at Chimwemwe Secondary School and Kamitondo Combined School. At the event, Mayor Mwaya said: “We need to protect vulnerable road users such as children, and this means improving road safety - especially around schools. A key aspect of improving safety around schools is ensuring speeds of 30km/hour or less through the provision of traffic calming measures and dedicated reduced speed zones in these areas of high pedestrian activity.”
“As only one of the two schools selected for this project in the Copperbelt, we are really thankful for the funders the FIA Foundation, and their partners the Zambia Road Safety Trust and the Zambia Motor Sports Association for safe guiding the lives of school-going children at Chimwemwe Secondary,” added Headmaster Simukonda Edwin Chimwemwe Secondary School “In the past year, we had experienced traffic accidents involving children coming to and from school because the Road outside had no humps and road signs. With the safe infrastructure now put in place, most especially the humps and rabble strips, it will be difficult for the drivers to over speed.
“Every child deserves a safe journey to school. This project in Kitwe is an exciting opportunity to show how low-speed streets can make all road users safer,” said FIA Foundation Programmes Manager, Aggie Krasnolucka.
Road Transport & Safety Agency CEO, Alinani Msisya, added: “Mandated by the government to promote road safety, the Road Transport & Safety Agency is pleased with the work that has been done by the FIA Foundation. We caution all motorists to observe appropriate speed limits set around the school zone to avoid any road traffic accidents affecting children.”