The Roads Authority (RA) says road users will now be fined for damaging road infrastructure to enable the authority maintain and replace such infrastructure.
RA spokesperson Portia Kajanga made the announcement during an engagement the authority had with Lilongwe City Council officials, Gravam Construction Engineers, the Directorate of Road Traffic and Safety Services (DRTSS), Traffic Police and road users representatives in Lilongwe on Friday.
She said: “Roads Authority has been covering costs of renovation and replacement of damaged road infrastructure resulting from carelessness, but now that responsibility is being transferred to the one who causes the damage.”
Kajanga explained that the RA was losing a lot of money in replacing and renovating such damages instead of investing in other projects; hence, the change of approach.
She added that in case of death of the person involved in the vandalism, be it through accident or carelessness, the fine will be imposed on the remaining family members.
The meeting was aimed at sensitising road users to the use of new roads, especially the Area 49-Area 18-Parliament dual carriage road which despite not being commissioned which has already registered a number of accidents.
The meeting started with a tour of the road to appreciate the hot spots and later a meeting in Area 12 where stakeholders brainstormed on the kind of sign posts to be placed along the road for safety.
Area 18 Police Station traffic officer Monica Jekete said a lot of accidents on the road are due to ignorance on how to use it and appreciated the engagement, saying it will save lives.
“This dual carriageway has a section for motorised, non-motorised [such as bicycles] and pedestrian road users but you find that sometimes a motorised user is occupying space for the non-motorised users while some non-motorised users cling to the pedestrian space due to lack of knowledge,” she said.
Many accidents on the said road involve motorists colliding or hitting cyclists or pedestrians.