A new road safety programme has been launched in Tanzania in a bid to address the country’s poor record on road casualties. TanRAP is the Tanzanian Road Assessment Programme and is intended to help eliminate high-risk roads and reduce annual casualty toll. At present more than 16,000 people/year die on Tanzania’s roads, according to official data.
In a bid to address the issue, the Government of Tanzania through the Ministry of Works and Transport recently signed a Letter of Intent to enter into a Memorandum of Understanding with the International Road Assessment Programme (iRAP). One of the first steps will be the use of a survey vehicle to undertake a series of TanRAP surveys along approximately 1,000km in Tanzania this year.
A key milestone of the Ten Step Project Tanzania, TanRAP is an initiative headed by the Ministry of Works and Transport (MoWT), which aims to build capacity and improve the safety of road infrastructure in the country. This is being carried out in partnership with leading stakeholders such as Tanzania National Roads Agency (TANROADS), Tanzania Rural and Urban Roads Agency (TARURA), Tanzania Road Association (TARA), National Institute of Transport (NIT), Road Safety Ambassadors (RSA) and Roads Fund Board (RFB). The programme also involves development banks, mobility clubs, road safety NGOs and industry.
Represented at the launch by the deputy minister (Transport) for the Ministry of Works and Transport Atupele Mwakibete, the minister of Works and Transport Prof Makame M Mbarawa said, “We are proud to launch TanRAP today in collaboration with important local and international partners. Tanzania is the very first country to be selected under the United Nations Road Safety Fund initiative to implement the UNRSC Ten Step approach to improve road infrastructure safety on both new and existing roads. We are grateful for this privilege and the opportunity that this project has created for the creation and establishment of a National Road Assessment Programme in Tanzania.”
Rob McInerney, CEO of iRAP said, “TanRAP captures the iRAP spirit, connecting people and partners to ensure we solve problems once and share success quickly. By drawing on the globally-recognised and freely-available iRAP methodology and software, and with connections to training and iRAP partners worldwide, TanRAP will help road agencies develop evidence-based policy and systematically manage safety on existing roads and new road designs.”
Achieving greater than 75% of travel on 3-star or better roads for all road users by 2030 stands to save 1.6 million lives and serious injuries over the 20-year life of treatments in Tanzania. Not only will this save in human lives either as there will be an economic benefit of US$26 for every $1 spent on road improving safety.