Title

TRAFFIC SAFETY DIAGNOSTICS AND APPLICATION OF COUNTERMEASURES FOR RURAL ROADS IN BURKINA FASO

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

2003

Subject Area

operations - traffic, planning - safety/accidents, organisation - management, place - rural

Keywords

Upper Volta, Under developed countries, Traffic safety, Traffic law enforcement, Third world, Socioeconomic factors, Socioeconomic aspects, Safety management, Rural highways, Less developed countries, Infrastructure, Improvements, Driver training, Developing countries, Countermeasures, Burkina Faso, Behind the wheel instruction, Accident data

Abstract

The government of Burkina Faso has recently been making important macroeconomic changes to encourage the economic growth of the country. To maintain this growth, the government has implemented a transportation program to improve road network efficiency and safety. A 2000 study to improve the safety of rural roads in Burkina Faso is described. The primary objectives were to assess traffic safety problems and propose countermeasures to reduce the number and severity of collisions on rural roads. Many rural roads were evaluated on site; all accident data and important socioeconomic variables were collected; and key staff members from various governmental and private agencies were interviewed. The study has shown that traffic safety problems in Burkina Faso are multidimensional, involving inefficient traffic safety management and policy, inadequate road networks, untrained drivers, and defective vehicles. Several traffic safety countermeasures have been proposed for immediate, short-, and long-term application. The most important countermeasures are to create a new institutional framework for improving traffic safety management and train the key personnel responsible for implementing these countermeasures. For the short term, the countermeasures mainly relate to roadway infrastructure improvements and better enforcement tools. For the long term, the countermeasures include a review of current highway traffic laws and their application, evaluation of existing countermeasures, and driver training improvement.