Cameroon’s Bizarre Solution to Traffic Accidents

How do you prevent road accidents, especially at night? Ban use of the roads. That’s how simple it is, and that’s the tact the government of Central African country Cameroon believes is the best solution to reverse high death rates caused by nighttime road accidents.

In a bold move, the Cameroonian government of President Paul Biya has imposed a partial ban on the use of inter-city roads during nighttime. The ban covers only inter-city public transport and will be imposed between 9pm and 5am. Land Transport director Aoudou Dotel Moussa said a significant percentage of all road accidents occur in the nighttime, mostly due to drunk-driving and over-speeding.  “Night traffic represents just about 5 percent of human transport, but represents 35 percent of road accidents,” Moussa said. Last year, about 1,258 people died in road accidents, while at least 5,000 were hurt or injured, the government said.

Despite being the largest economy in Central Africa, Cameroon’s road systems remain in disarray. Less than 20 percent of roads in the country are paved, while toll roads that connect cities are usually just single lane roads.