If there is any spot in the capital city of Awka that has witnessed many accidents, that place is the Okpuzu Junction, Awka, popularly known as Agu Awka. That spot is really a busy one; being that it connects four areas viz: Aroma, Old Awka, Unizik and Ifite.
Vehicles coming from any of these places or going to any of them will have to get to that central point. The fact that that spot is in bad condition does not help matters as it usually causes traffic jam. It is when there is such heavy traffic there that accidents usually happen, mostly in the form of heavy duty or articulated vehicles developing brake problems and ramming into the other vehicles there.
That was exactly the case on Friday, August 27, when a trailer’s brakes failed, forcing it to ram into two vehicles. A life was lost in that unfortunate incident.
The fatality recorded that day joined many that had been recorded there in the past. The worst was when three members of a family of five were killed when another trailer rammed into their car. The dead included both parents and one of the three children. Petrol tankers have also fallen there, spilling their fuel and igniting fire.
We have noticed that the poor condition of the road at that place contributes, to a large extent, to the accidents recorded there. It is this poor condition of that forces vehicles to slow down and become vulnerable to heavy duty vehicles that develop faults.
To address this problem, government had in the past tried to put up speed breakers but over time those speed breakers had been spoilt by the weight of vehicles that go over them. The aim of installing them in the first place was to force such heavy duty vehicles to slow down before they got to the junction.
Having observed that this earlier measure did not work, we suggest that stronger speed breakers be installed on the side of the road coming from Aroma to Agu Awka from the front of Government House to Agu Awka Junction. A roundabout should also be constructed there, while traffic controllers should be permanently stationed there to ensure free flow of traffic. While this may not entirely stop the carnage on that spot, we believe it will go a long way in curbing it.
A situation where accidents occur there every week is quite alarming and unacceptable. A permanent measure to checkmate it is therefore very necessary.