As part of efforts to stem the tide of road crashes during the ‘ember’ months, the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), in collaboration with the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) had a recent two-day exercise on mass casualty handling of road accidents.
The exercise, which demonstrated practical mock rescue operations in the advent of road crashes, aimed at mobilising various stakeholders in the North-east region to showcase rescue activities and enforce strict traffic rules and regulations.
The Head of operations of the agency, Gombe state office, Mr. Jewel Apollos, while giving a keynote address at the state secretariat in Bauchi, said the northern states are crowded with high congestion during the ‘ember’ months and has five major international road networks from Chad, Cameroun, Niger and Central African Republic, which extends up to Sudan.
According to him, “during the festive periods, there are heavy traffic movements of people within the region and the urge to make quick and fast money by commercial motorists who travel long distances, coupled with bad road networks, which has resulted to the massive loss of lives at an alarming rate”.
The Gombe NEMA boss said factors responsible for road crashes include over-loading, over-speeding, bad vehicles, making calls while driving and defective head lights and windscreen, amongst other factors.
He disclosed that the NEMA Gombe Operations Office in accordance with its mandate is required to mobilise resources for prevention of road crashes, mitigation, coordination and management of vulnerability and disasters.
Apollos further appealed to medical personnel to improve their services and draft out mass casualties plans during the seasons in order to complement the agency efforts at reducing road crashes.
Meanwhile, the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) has donated relief items to victims of the 2012 flood disaster in Misau local government.
Receiving the items on behalf of the state government for onward distribution, the SEMA Director Planning, Shehu Abu, commended NEMA and the federal government for giving succour to the victims of flood disaster in the local government and assured that the items would be presented to the beneficiaries.