The 127.6-kilometre-long expressway connecting Ibadan, the capital of Oyo State and Lagos State, popularly referred to as “Lagos-Ibadan expressway”, is the oldest and remains one of the busiest inter-state routes in West Africa. As major traffic artery, it has certainly hosted its share of accidents over the years.
While many have attributed the frequency of these accidents to the bad state of the road, there are other factors that play major roles in facilitating these accidental calamities. From drunk-driving to the negligence of road laws as well as speeding, these factors but can be adequately tackled and accidents prevented by taking key steps.
Jovago.com, Africa’s No.1 online hotel booking site throws light on steps motorists can take to avoid accidents on Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
Stay away from the ‘fast lane’.
It the expressway, so it feels natural to kick up your gear and soar…but remember that speed thrills and also kills. While on the expressway, keep a rein on your speed and stay in control of your vehicle.
Also, stay away from the fast lane and instead, use the center or right lane. Doing so ensures you have more escape routes should a problem suddenly arise that requires you to quickly change lanes. Actually, most of the accidents on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway occur in the left lane, so stay away already reduces your chances of being involved. An added perk is to stay away from the fast lane ensure that less conspicuous to the highway patrols and will not be flagged down so often.
Do not drive on drugs and alcohol
This may sound cliché but, alcohol and drugs, not just cocaine or intoxicants like marijuana but any kind of drug basically, alter the normal body system and so can impair judgments as well as slow down reflexes.
Driving under the influence of alcohol, marijuana or other drugs can cost you your license – or your life. So many accidents that have occurred on the expressway have been as a result of drivers who insisted on heading out while on drugs or alcohol. Even if you think it is just only one drink or one smoked joint, do not take the risk, stay off the wheel and save not just your life, but the life of others.
Check your vehicle before you set out. Know its limits.
A lot of drivers just set out with their vehicles, without first checking to see if the engine and brake are in perfect condition or the tires well inflated and screwed in. This negligence puts the driver as well as other motorists at risk. Drivers must ensure their vehicles are in good working condition- there should be no compromise on the quality of brakes and tires.
Aside from checking the engine, rate the performance limits of the vehicle. Pay attention to how your particular vehicle reacts in certain situations, how long it can last on the road and how many people plus cargo it can take per time. The risk of a fatal crash also increases with every additional passenger or luggage.
Ignore aggressive drivers, do not tailgate.
If you have driven past the Lagos-Ibadan expressway, you will be well aware of the kind of crazy drivers that parade the road. They are far from courteous and flaunt road rules with no remorse. They also like to challenge other drivers by doing such things as speeding recklessly or cutting other drivers off. Do not engage this kind of drivers or try to beat them at their own game, the best thing to do is to get as far out of their way as possible. Rather than play their games and get them even much more infuriated, slow down and let them pass. The quicker you can get them away from you, the safer you will be.
Do not tailgate any other vehicle or allow others to tailgate you. Leave a three-second cushion between you and the car in front of you and begin your journey early enough so you do not have to speed to make up time. Again, large tractor-trailers need extra space when making wide right turns, so, stay away from the right side of anyone you see on the expressway.
Lock your Mobile phones away. Avoid other in-car distractions.
Mobile phones are not the best companion on the road and should only be used for emergency purposes only. And even before being use, the driver should cut off motion and make a parking by the road side to take or make the call. Talking on the phone, while driving, is a straight ticket to an accident as it is extremely distracting.
If you must use your cell phone while driving, try a hands-free model or enable a Bluetooth connection with the car’s radio. It is important basically to avoid all forms of distractions, from loud music to doing things like eating or brushing your hair (yes, some people who actually do these things). If you are not concentrating solely on your driving, you will not be prepared for anything that is up ahead and you put yourself at risk of an accident.