A Lusaka bound Freightliner truck carrying 30 metric tonnes of maize left both motorists and other road users stranded for over three hours on either side of the Great East Road,20Km from Rufunsa District’s Administrative Centre as Police hapless tried to clear the road.
And quick action by Zambia Police Service Traffic Patrol Officers averted a possible looting of 30 metric tonnes of maize from the same truck destined for Lusaka by unruly youths and nearby villagers.
Meanwhile,some motorists and passengers have implored government to consider widening some portions of the Great East Road in a bid to reduce on accidents.
ZANIS reports that the accident occurred around 13:00 hours after a Lusaka bound Freightliner truck registration number ABR 2757 belonging to Paulendo Transporters of Chipata in Eastern Province careered off the road and block both lanes.
According to the Truck Driver, Stanely Ziba,said the truck which was carrying 30 tonnes of white maize destined for a named Lusaka milling company partially overturned.
Mr. Ziba explained that the truck failed to negotiate a corner and started moving back before it partially overturn and blocked both lanes of the Great East Road at a place called Chipako.
“This truck belongs to Paulendo Transporters of Chipata and when I reached this place,the truck failed to pull before it careered off the road and blocked both lanes”, Mr. Ziba said.
Chipako is about 20 Km from Rufunsa’s Administrative Centre and is notorious for accidents as the narrow road meanders through mountains on both sides of the road.
Traffic accumulated on both sides of the road as both lanes were blocked forcing motorists on either of the road to wait for over three hours as police worked tirelessly to clear the road.
After over three hours of work allowed the partial opening of one lane of the road to allow motorists who were becoming impatient.
And Police Officers arrived on the scene just on time as both unruly youths and villagers who were in uncompromising mood wanted to help themselves on the maize that fell from the truck.
However, vigilant Police Officers’ tact persuaded some unruly youths to join in clearing,offloading and loading the maize back on the truck.
Meanwhile,several motorists and passengers are of the view that widening some parts of the road will reduce accidents.
Speaking in separate interviews with ZANIS,some passagers from two luxury coach buses,Johabie Coach Express and Roadscan Buses,urged government to consider widening some parts of the road.
“Government should seriously consider widening some portions especially those that passes through mountains and blind spots if we are to save lives”, they noted.
The passengers noted the portion of the road where the accident occurred is too narrow as it meanders through mountains hence contributing to the many road accidents.
Rufunsa District in Lusaka Province has recorded many fatal road accidents in the first quarter of this year.
According to Police sources in Rufunsa District,the stretch from Manenekela to Nyagwena area on the Great East Road has recorded the high road traffic accidents during the last quarter.