Last week I did a piece on how to verify if a vehicle is installed with a speed limiter. This week marks the second week of enforcement which began on October 1st 2016 nationwide and the question on most people lips is whether we are succeeding or not especially in the face of the economic recession. I have therefore decided to do a review of progress made so far within the first six days across the country after which I will also shed light on the frequently asked questions as strategy to open up a new chapter of education on the ongoing speed limiting device enforcement. So how smooth is the exercise going? My boss,Dr Boboye Oyeyemi is best suited to answer this as I have my restrictions since I only know of happenings within my zone which is made of of Rivers ,Cross River, Bayelsa and Akwa Ibom States. So what is the take of the Corps Marshal of the Federal Road Safety Corps? I will rely on his recent media chat where he reviewed six days, stating that the record nationwide indicates that 22,908 vehicles had been checked nationwide; 1164 had the device installed while 21,744 were yet to comply. His review indicates that Rivers had the highest number of 170, while Enugu had 165 and Kogi had 100.Within these period, he said citations were issued out to 21,744 offenders with a warnimg.This, he said was done to allow tolerance by giving them two weeks warning. He commended the enthusiasm shown thus far and expressed delight that two companies are already bringing equipment to commence local production with plans to have them commissioned by next month. This development will no doubt solve the problem of cost which has remained a sore point for some commercial drivers and owners
So, as we await the commissioning of the plant and a possible crash in cost of the device, it is imperative to step up awareness strategy to bridge the gap by focusing on the frequently asked questions by motorists some of who still question the rationale behind the ongoing enforcement despite the fact that almost every Nigerian has lost a friend, family member, colleague of neighbor through avoidable road traffic crashes. Prior to the enforcement, questions such as what a speed limiter is, how it works, types, who approves the standard among others have and are still being asked, I will attempt these as space allows and continue some other time. A speed limiting device sometimes referred to as governor’ is used for controlling the speed of a vehicle or a device used to measure or regulate the speed of a vehicle. Unlike the era prior to Oct 1 when discretion was on the driver accounting for avoidable crashes and deaths, the device does not allow the driver to accelerate beyond the stipulated speed limit by law as has been programmed in the vehicle. So no matter how the driver tends to accelerate, the pre-set speed limit will not be exceeded.Meanwhie there are two types;. the mechanical speed limiting device and the electrical/Electronic speed limiting device. Of the 38 vendors so far certified, certified by the major technical committee members which includes Standard Organization of Nigeria (SON), National Automotive Design and Development Council (NADDC) and FRSC.The approved marketers are responsible for installation of the speed limiting device through their agents (Technicians) who are trained and certified for that purpose. Therefore you must avoid the lure of being sweet talked by mechanics who will tell you they have the capacity and experience to install.
Like I said at the beginning of this piece, the enforcement commenced on Oct 1st and the price for the device is not fixed but is determined by the market force. As a word of caution, to check functionality and workability of the devices users are not allowed to tamper with the device but inform installers of any malfunction where they occur. Where issue of repairs arises, please note that the approved marketers through their certified agents carry out periodic service/calibration of the device based on Standard Organization of Nigeria (SON) specification. Issues of security were pronounced during our series of engagement and advocacies but you must know that once installed and calibrated the device will not allow you go beyond the pre-set speed limit cannot increase speed beyond the approved limit. Rather in the case of emergency, the driver is expected to apply defensive driving technique. Remember that commercial vehicles must comply and Regulation 231 defines commercial vehicles as follows:“Commercial vehicle” includes motorcycle for hire, a hackney carriage, stage carriage, a prime mover, recovery vehicle, draw-bar-trailer or articulated vehicle, buses, pick up vans, tricycles and any motor vehicle primarily designed for the carriage of goods and fare-paying passengers as well as vehicles for carrying people by companies and religious bodies. Regulation 109, – (1) states that: All school buses shall be registered as commercial vehicles. Therefore school proprietors must note that compliance is key for them as they are not exempted.