Vivo Energy Ghana, a Shell licensee, in partnership with the National Road Safety Authority and Health Nexus Network, has launched a road safety campaign project to promote and enhance the physical and mental well-being of commercial vehicle drivers in the country.
Dubbed: “Fit2Drive Wellness Programme”, it is also designed to maintain optimal health and safety standards on the road.
This follows the successful launch and roll-out of STOP, THINK & DRIVE road safety campaign.
Following the launch yesterday, drivers who participated in the programme benefited from free occupational health assessment from a team of health professionals at the Neoplan Station in Accra.
The commercial drivers were screened for basic occupational health conditions associated with their work to reduce road traffic accidents.
The Health, Security, Safety, Environment and Quality Manager of Vivo Energy Ghana, Joseph Kankam, in a speech read on behalf of the Managing Director, said the well-being of commercial drivers was paramount not only for their personal health, but also the safety and success of their operations.
He said although the demands of the job could take a toll on the health and wellness of drivers, the programme was designed to promote holistic wellness and instil a sense of responsibility and awareness among commercial drivers.
As part of the Fit2 Drive wellness programme, he said the company would liaise with various transport unions to organise fitness sessions for drivers at selected bus terminals to enhance drivers' physical and mental well-being to reduce the risk of accidents caused by fatigue or health-related issues.
He urged stakeholders to support the initiative that prioritised the health and well-being of drivers to ensure that they were physically and mentally fit to navigate the roads safely.
“We believe that investing in the wellness of our drivers is essential for fostering a safer and more efficient transportation system,” he stated.
The Chief Executive Officer of Health Nexus Network, Dr Elvis Forson, pointed out that some risk conditions such as hypertension and diabetes were the primary causes of road accidents in the country.
He urged drivers to be sensitive to their health and encouraged them to seek regular and timely medical attention to avert any unforeseen health issues on the road.
“Among the many reasons attributed to road traffic accidents is the failing health of drivers.
Cardiovascular conditions like hypertension, diabetes and their complications such as strokes, heart attacks and increased fatigue are direct risk factors for road accidents as they lower the productivity of drivers and even permanent disability,” he said.
The Director of Institutional Care Division of Ghana Health Service, Dr Ofori-Boadu, advised commercial drivers to seek regular check-ups at approved health centres to be informed of their health status for safe driving.
He said it was of utmost importance for commercial vehicle drivers to be mindful of their health conditions and build a healthy lifestyle to safeguard the safety of road users.
He insisted that drivers should go for regular check-ups and health screening to avoid further complications.
The Motor Transport and Traffic Directorate (MTTD), Superintendent Joseph Appiah, charged the drivers to take regular eye check-ups and rest to regain their energy before embarking on further trips.
He urged them to comply with road safety regulations to avoid any crashes on the road and issues with the law.
The Director of Research Monitoring and Evaluation of National Road Safety Authority, Daniel Wuaku, said there had been a decrease in recorded cases of road crashes and commended all stakeholders for their respective roles.
He, however, said that despite a reduction in road accidents, the authority remained committed to working with any stakeholder to support the national cause.