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December 14, 2018

NTSA unveils new drivers' training curriculum in move to curb road accidents

The wreckage of the bus that was involved in accident at Migaa area, Salgaa on Nakuru-Eldoret Highway on Sunday, December 31, 2017. /FILE
The wreckage of the bus that was involved in accident at Migaa area, Salgaa on Nakuru-Eldoret Highway on Sunday, December 31, 2017. /FILE

NTSA has launched a new curriculum for training drivers in a bid to forestall the rampant road accidents witnessed during the just concluded festive season.

In a statement on Wednesday, director general Francis Meja said the new system will ensure drivers are provided with sufficient skills to enable them to use roads safely. 

"Over 90 per cent of accidents result from human error. The curriculum has been designed to address the different needs of drivers depending on the vehicles they use."

Meja said the new curriculum has been split into several modules for training and testing of drivers of motorcycles, light vehicles, PSVs and heavy commercial vehicles.

There are also modules that provide requirements for those people who drive for a living and for the drivers of plant and agricultural machinery.

The National Transport and Safety Authority boss said the curriculum includes theoretical sections and examinations and practical sections and examinations.

"Drivers have a high level of responsibility and their actions can influence the lives of many people, especially the drivers of PSV and HCV vehicles. It is, therefore, important that these drivers are highly skilled and experienced," Meja said.

Read: Driving schools to be deregistered, Matiang'i declares as deadly accidents soar

Also read: NTSA stops issuing RSL licences after accidents

The new curriculum outlines the minimum level of driving experience that is required before training can begin for the various classes of vehicles.

In addition to setting the standards for the training and testing of drivers, it also sets the standards for driving schools, driving instructors and driving examiners.

The transport authority said this is in recognition of the need to raise the professionalism and profile of the driving industry.

Meja said the supporting legislation for the new curriculum also makes provision for the establishment of professional bodies for drivers, instructors, and examiners.

"These bodies will be closely involved in the future improvement and development of driving standards in Kenya in the years to come."

All drivers and riders in Kenya will have to be trained under the new curriculum and must pass the test to be allowed to drive or ride a motor vehicle.

"There are eight modules which translate to respective categories of licenses. The first four units must be done by all drivers before embarking on additional specific units to meet requirements for each module as defined in this curriculum. The curriculum seeks to mitigate this by improving the competence and discipline of drivers by addressing the knowledge, skills and attitude gap."

This came days after Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang'i said the government will de-register driving schools for fresh listing in the wake of the accidents which claimed over 200 lives in December alone.

Related: NTSA bans PSV night travel after Salgaa crash

Read: NTSA, KeNHA put drivers on notice after December accidents kill 150

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