The medium-term outlook for South Africa's road safety situation does not look very promising, the Committee for Active Road Safety has warned.

The medium-term improvement of South Africa's road safety situation does not look very promising, the Committee for Active Road Safety has warned.

Cars chairman Ian Auret said that there were a number of factors that could still negatively impact the situation on our roads and that 2004 would be a very difficult year to address these issues.

The up-coming general election was right at the top of his list of concerns.

"There are a number of factors that could act negatively on the situation on our roads in the near future. Not least of these is the fact that the country will be having a general election in the first half of the year. We fear that road safety issues may well be pushed into the background as the politicians vie for votes to ensure their seats in parliament," Auret said.

The further postponement (until 2010) of the new laws governing taxi operators and the seemingly fragmented traffic authority system were also major Cars concerns.

Auret stated that politicians would not want to alienate voters with unpopular road safety actions ahead of the elections. He added too that it seemed unlikely that the Road Traffic Management Corporation (RTMC) would be activated soon since it currently only had one full-time director.

Auret said that this would leave us to continue for some time with a highly unsatisfactory traffic authority system that was "one of the major stumbling blocks in improving road traffic safety."

"If South Africa's road situation is treated with the urgency it requires, if proper enforcement of existing legislation is made possible and if a single person or body is made accountable for the situation, we can improve road safety dramatically in this country," Auret said.

Original article from Car