University Students Innovation To Reduce Road Accidents Carnage
The Kenyan government through its National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) has been implementing new traffic regulation. That led to the re-introduction of Alcoblow, speed governors and ban on night travel by public service vehicle (PSV). Although these traffic regulation have elicited mix reactions from various stakeholders most of whom take these implementation as the not so fitting remedy to these serious traffic dangers.
For instance, health experts have raised grave concerns about the hygiene of the Alcoblow in detecting drivers under influence. The ban on night PSV services has seriously affected the economy considering most businesses are gearing up to becoming a 24/7 operating ventures and the re-introduction of speed governors has led to PSV operators being innovative in overriding the gadgets speed control on their vehicles thus over speeding despite having the device installed.
This is perhaps what encouraged two university students from Rongo University to come up with an innovative technology that will address all of the problems the Alcoblow and speed governor attempts to solve. Dubbed the Electronic Revenue Collection and Immobilisation System, a brain child of two varsity students named Ms. Emily Muriithi and Mr. Percy Lemutukei. This device not only checks on over speeding and drunk driving, but also serves as an e-revenue collection system.
When fitted inside the vehicle, this device has the ability to detect drunk driving and will immobilize the vehicle. In addition to that, it can also detect when a vehicle is over speeding and playing loud music and will as well immobilize such vehicles. Once the vehicles has been immobilizes by the device, the device system sends an alert text message to the central unit and thus report the vehicle’s registration. If adopted by the NTSA, the Electronic Revenue Collection and Immobilisation System will make Kenya roads safer in addition to automating the process of revenue collection from the PSV operators.
Both Muriithi and Lemutukei are students taking Information, Communication and Media Studies at Rongo University. They say what inspired their invention was the consistent lack of adherence to traffic rules and regulations by PSV operators. This has led to alarming rate of road accident carnage that continues to take innocent lives. Considering that the device will also automate revenue collection, this is seen as very promising in curbing corruption by removing humans from the process. It is in the public knowledge that revenue collection has been characterized by corruption as a result of colluding of revenue collection authorities and those supposed to pay these revenues.
Lemutukei said, “Once we are through with registering this new system and after following the right market procedures, matatu (PSV) owners can buy it and fit it into their vehicles. The system can register all PSVs in one database and the owners can subscribe to our services and pay through M-Pesa or any other mobile money transfer service on a weekly, monthly or yearly basis for the service.” This innovation from Ms. Muriithi and Mr. Lemutukei has a potential of curbing revenue lost by government through corruption and as well as making the Kenyan roads a safer place to travel on.