Publication source: Zambia Reports
Now that Lusaka has confirmed the presence of the novel Coronavirus, the Zambian Roads & Highway Safety Group (ZRHSG) is urging the Zambian Government to consider sanitizing the mini bus transportation system in the country.
The Zambian Roads and Highway Safety Group is aware that minibuses have for a long time been squeezing five passengers per seat (known as five –five) instead of 3 passengers per seat. These minibuses are also poorly ventilated with most windows not designed for opening. This means that passengers are in close proximity and contact of one another and breathe in the same corrupt air. If one sick passenger sneezes in the bus, the chances of the entire bus getting the corona virus are very high.
The Zambian Roads and Highway Safety Group is also aware that most of these buses are often cleaned using water drawn from all sorts of sources including ponds and streams around Lusaka. Their levels of hygiene are very low as compared to the acceptable standards and requirements of cleanliness to prevent and defeat the corona virus.
The Zambian Roads and Highway Safety Group is therefore appealing to the Ministries of Health (MoH) and Communications and Transport, working with relevant stakeholders in the public transportation sector such as bus owners, public transport groups and road safety agencies to find a way of cleaning up and sanitizing these minibuses so that they are germ and virus free before and after every trip.
We are also appealing for these small buses to be compelled to carry less passengers in compliance with social distancing among strangers and for them to have hand sanitizers at hand for use by passengers on demand.
We are also calling on health officials to quickly disinfect all bus stations and buses to prevent the Corona virus from landing into our compounds.
To passengers feeling and showing signs of Coronavirus (flu, headache, fever and cough), please avoid use of mini buses and call for an ambulance to transport you to the nearest health Coronavirus centre.
Let us be road smart and defeat the corona virus on our roads and transportation system. Every day without any road death is possible and every Zambian life matters.