|A truck carrying more timber than permitted crashed on March 22, killing all seven people onboard in the central province of Thanh Hóa.— Photo vov.vn|
HÀ NỘI — The number of people killed in traffic accidents on Việt Nam’s roads in the first three months of 2021 increased by more than 30 per cent compared to the same period last year.
A report by the National Committee for Traffic Safety revealed that although the actual number of accidents and injuries fell, more people died.
From the beginning of 2021 to the end of March, 1,672 people were killed on the roads compared to 1,489 over the same period last year.
March alone was a particularly bad month with 15 people killed in three separate accidents over a 10-day period in the central province of Thanh Hóa and the northern province of Hòa Bình.
Khuất Việt Hùng, Vice President of the National Committee on Traffic Safety said although there were a number of factors causing accidents, human error was the main reason for the fatality increase.
He said people driving under the influence of alcohol and overloaded lorries and coaches contributed to the rise in deaths.
Hùng said poor road infrastructure was also to blame, with many local roads suffering from poor visibility, especially at night.
Roads on mountains were also dangerous for motorists and some road markings were not fitted with anti-glare equipment.
And he said some localities had failed in their duties to improve traffic safety.
The report found in some cases, trucks were carrying 200 per cent more than the permitted capacity.
In one instance, a lorry that crashed in Thanh Hóa on March 22, was only allowed to carry 15 tonnes but was found to be loaded with 27 tonnes of timber.
There were also seven people in the lorry that was designed to just take two. All seven people died in the accident.
Overloading, according to the report, often occurred in areas close to mining facilities.
Nguyễn Văn Huyện, Director General of the Directorate for Roads of Việt Nam ordered all provinces and cities throughout the country to conduct more inspections of vehicles transporting commodities, especially in provinces and cities where mines were located.
“If we do not take proper action, vehicles carrying over capacity will destroy all our roads and cause more traffic accidents,” he said.
In a related move, Deputy Prime Minister Trương Hòa Bình, head of the National Committee for Traffic Safety told a conference last week there were still major concerns over road safety.
He tasked all relevant ministries and localities to propose feasible solutions to reduce traffic accidents in the future.
He also ordered the Ministry of Public Security to investigate if companies were aware some of their trucks were being overloaded. — VNS