The National Emergency Management Agency has revealed that it recorded and responded to 53 road emergencies between December 18, 2020, and January 4, 2021.

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The Director-General of the agency, Muhammadu Muhammed, disclosed that the emergency responses were done in collaboration with the Federal Road Safety Corps under the joint Operation Eagle Eye initiative.

In his keynote address during the After Action Review of the 2020 Operation Eagle Eye, the DG revealed that the agencies embarked on the initiative to prevent road traffic crashes and ensure prompt intervention on highways.

He said, “NEMA deployed 48 specialised vehicles including the mobile intensive care ambulances, 431 personnel and volunteers for the operation nationwide.

“The agency in collaboration with stakeholders responded to 53 road emergencies across the zonal territorial and operation offices covering 84 routes.

“Unfortunately, 12 fatalities and 88 injuries were recorded by the agency on these routes. These unfortunate incidents on our roads once again bring to the fore the need for road users to be careful at all times and adhere to all safety measures.”

He noted that Nigeria had the largest road network in West Africa and the second largest south of the Sahara, with more than 108,000km of surfaced roads used for the movement of people and goods.

“Unfortunately, the poor state of these roads and infrastructure, high traffic and wrong usage have led to increased road crashes with consequent fatalities and injuries,” he stated.

Muhammed added, “It is in this light that NEMA provided support to the lead agency, FRSC, in coordination with other stakeholders at the last year Yuletide season covering the period of December 18, 2020, to January 4, 2021.”

Explaining that the After Action Review was organised to evaluate the overall conduct of the operation with a view to proffering solutions to identified shortcomings, he stated that Operation Eagle Eye was a global initiative targeted at enlightening road users on the rules and regulations guiding road usage and that the programme was an annual event conducted during the Yuletide season.