Introduction—In many low income countries, commercial vehicles are the major source of motorized transport. Drivers of such vehicles may be an important focus for road safety efforts.
Aims—An estimation of the percentage of motor vehicle related injuries that involved commercial vehicles in Ghana was sought. The knowledge, attitude, and practices of commercial drivers with regards to road safety was then evaluated.
Methods—A community based survey was carried out, involving 21 105 persons. As well, focus group discussions were held with 30 commercial drivers.
Results—In the survey, 122 motor vehicle related injuries were reported for the preceding year. The majority (81%) of these involved commercial vehicles, principally buses (40%) and taxis (24%). The involvement of commercial vehicles was the same for both motor vehicle crashes (81%) and pedestrian injuries (82%). However, motor vehicle related injuries in children were especially likely to involve commercial vehicles (95%), in comparison with adults (79%). The focus groups indicated that commercial drivers had a good general attitude towards road safety. Most believed that actions could be taken that would lower the risk of crashes and injuries, including vision examinations, using seat belts, and avoiding alcohol. However, this knowledge was not fully implemented. For example, few drivers had ever had their vision checked and most used seat belts only for long journeys.
Conclusions—In Ghana, commercial drivers are an important group to target in road safety programs. They are also a potentially useful group to include in building coalitions to implement such road safety measures.
- developing country
- road safety
- commercial driver
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