HomeAuto AccidentsTackling Road Safety Concerns as Fatal Accidents Increase

Tackling Road Safety Concerns as Fatal Accidents Increase

Tackling Road Safety Concerns as Fatal Accidents Increase

In April, there was an increase in road traffic accidents across the country, many of which involved the deaths of motorcyclists. It’s alarming, and the Ministry of Economic Development wants to curb the number of traffic fatalities. A program specifically designed to spread awareness of motorcycle safety is expected to be launched soon. News Five’s Britney Gordon has the first look.




Survivor, Road Traffic Accident

“I was on the roundabout heading home, when I saw this car just merging into the roundabout as well.  I thought it would stop as it’s supposed to, right? But it didn’t stop, so that’s when it hit the back of my bike. Then I went flying into the air, and at that moment I, the only thing I could do was put my hands down to protect myself as well as I can. Because of the lack of protective gear. I suffered some really deep cuts, some abrasions, really bad scrapes, the nurses really had to clean me out really well. They had to scrub all my injuries. That was one of the worst experiences and worst pains I’ve ever felt.”


Britney Gordon, Reporting 

If you’ve noticed an alarming increase in road traffic incidents across the country, you’re not alone. April alone registered a record number of road traffic fatalities, several of which involved motorcyclists. To address the increase in these incidents, the Ministry of Economic Development launched its second phase of the Belize Road Safety Initiative, which works to increase public safety on the road through the spread of information and training. Sylvian Neal, office administrator of the project, spoke with us today about the initiative.


Sylvian Neal

Sylvian Neal

Sylvian Neal, Office Administrator, Second Belize Road Safety Project

“We deal with initiatives such as  a road user and education awareness component. We have an enforcement component. We have post-crash care as one of the components.  And many of our activities, they go under one of these components, and the basic idea is again to improve road safety in Belize, build the awareness of everybody in Belize, and to improve the culture on our world.”


Neal said that the team has observed an increase in the number of motorcycle crashes and is preparing to launch a campaign specifically geared towards motorcycle safety.


Sylvian Neal 

“It’s more of an educational campaign because we do have various campaigns geared towards speeding. are geared towards not drinking and driving. We have been rolling out many of those campaigns as the year has progressed up to now, no? And the specific campaign that I am referring to with regards to the motorcycle riders or users  is basically one that we are still undergoing right now, and that includes  developing flyers pamphlets, and then of course we have the videos that we try to send out to the media and also post on our social platform on the Facebook pages and TikToks and whatnot, no? All of that campaign includes those different aspects.”


Also working on the project is a member of the Belizean Youth for Road Safety, Jada Brown, who was trained by the team to educate drivers and assist in making Belize’s roads safer.


Tracy Dawson

Jada Brown

Jada Brown, Member, Belizean Youth for Road Safety

“So now we have more people wanting to know about road safety, they’re interested in learning about road safety. So a big part of what we do is share important messages for fellow drivers and also people. Just road users on a whole, not only drivers.”


Britney Gordon

“How about when it’s closer to the holidays? Do you guys increase your efforts around that time in order to combat, the increase of traffic and alcohol usage?”


Jada Brown

“Yes. A big part of what we do, we around those times we would spread more messages like the infographics and commercials geared around those times because there’s a spike of crashes and incidents around those times. So we tend to push more messages around those times, especially for people drinking and driving, wearing helmets and seatbelts.”


The Road Safety Initiative also aids in promoting road safety through the training of public service members who operate vehicles daily. Krishner Ramirez from the Department of Transportation shared his experience with the program.


Kirshner Ramirez

Kirshner Ramirez

Krishner Ramirez, Traffic Warden II, Department of Transportation

“It gives me a lot more knowledge on a broader sense to basically educate the public and have the public have an insight of what Really traffic and what basically everything that has to do with traffic on the road and the highways, the vehicles. It gives more knowledge to them to the work that we’re doing. So I praise these guys for basically having this energy to do this kind of work for us so that the public can have more knowledge of what’s going on.”


Ramirez said that the initiative is a noble cause, as lives can be saved through sharing information, no matter how small.


Krishner Ramirez

“To tell you the truth I would have to go with educating the public. Like I said we in Belize tend to have a tendency, me working on the ground in the field, and you stop and check these guys at the checkpoint scene.  They give you information like, Oh, we didn’t know this. We didn’t know that. We didn’t know this, so with these guys, influentials, bringing these flyers out and educating the youths, them from a younger age and even the adults, it’s a beautiful thing. I think it’s one of the best things we’ve been doing since years. We’re just trying to promote more safety and more safety because of the fact that exactly what you just said, we’ve been seeing a lot more higher percentage in these incidents, especially on the motorbikes. And it’s sad, it leaves family broken, kids alone, and it’s a sad thing.”


As the number of drivers on the roads increases , Neil reminds motorists to be diligent and abide by traffic laws.


Sylvian Neil

“To motorcyclists, we urge our motorcycle riders to try and wear proper helmets, right? Wear the fully covered helmets, the ones that fully cover your face, DOT certified helmets, because those are the ones that are going to better protect you in case you crash, in case of a collision, right? It fully protects your head from head injuries, right? And We don’t want to see people riding with helmets on their handles, right? Because the helmet isn’t really there just for style. It’s really something to protect you, right? From impact.  So we ask that you wear seatbelts, lock it, reduce speeding, don’t overtake”


Britney Gordon for News Five.

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