HEAD of the Road Safety Unit of the Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing has indicated that the new Road Traffic Act, that is expected to be passed in 2013, will focus on motor vehicle tyre safety.
Director of the unit, Kenute Hare, told JIS News that the agency will continue to educate the public on the importance of tyre safety as part of efforts to further reduce the number of road fatalities.
"Motorists will be required to have tyres with threads at a threshold of 1.6 millimetres," Hare emphasised.
He explained that "the groove in your tyre is there to disperse water, so if there is no groove, the water will not disperse quickly as it should and hence you will have less friction".
"In other words, your ability to stay on the road can be minimised and, hence, your ability to stop that motor vehicle in time will be difficult. So, we believe strongly that this would add some plus. Of course, we will continue to educate the population about the importance of proper tyre safety, so they are able to make proper choices within the traffic environment," Hare added.
The amended Act will also ensure that road safety issues are addressed according to 21st century requirements. It will, among other things, deal with the use of mobile phones while driving, and also cover the use of in-car devices, such as DVD players.
Once the new Act is passed, driving schools and instructors will be required to be certified by the Island Traffic Authority and adhere to an approved curriculum, which will address issues such as defensive driving.
The country recorded a total of 258 road fatalities for 2012, some 49 less than the previous year, and for the first time in over a decade, achieved its 'Below 300' target.