The Roads Authority (RA) has commenced with the installation of Kilometre (KM) markers for the surfaced road network in Namibia. According to information from RA, the KM markers are standardised and will replace the old road signs. The signs will be installed in a forward direction in accordance with RA’s road referencing system.
“The essence of these KM markers is to label every kilometre distance on the national road network. The markers will also incorporate the road number,” said the RA Corporate Communication in a press release last week.
The fundamental function of these new KM markers will be for the Roads Authority to carry out its administrative mandate while in the same vein enabling the Authority to identify locations on the road network.
The RA has informed The Villager that the presence of the KM markers will also aid the organisation to identity “black spots” where accidents occur frequently. “The data provided from these KM markers will be analyzed and we will come up with interventions of implementing infrastructural road alterations that will reduce/prevent accidents at identified “black spots” on our national road network. In addition, the markers will assist road users to identify their exact location on the road network which will enable them to get prompt assistance in cases of a breakdown or any other emergency”, the RA stated.
Meanwhile, Namibia’s road network is widely regarded as one of the best on the continent while huge budgets are allocated for road construction and maintenance which has received due acclaim as adhering to international standards.
However, reports indicate that Namibia has a relatively high prevalence of road accidents, compared to its sparse population. In 2011 (can we get statistics of last year instead of 5 years ago?) alone 491 people died in 2,846 crashes. While accident cases caused by faded distance markers have emerged since 2009, the major causes have been pinned on either speeding or reckless driving, as well as general non-observance of traffic rules. Namibia has positioned itself towards achieving the Vision 2030 goal which speaks of “a prosperous and industrialised Namibia, developed by her human resources, enjoying peace, harmony and political stability and improving on the road network is an integral part of that effort.”