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Road Safety Strategy and Action Plan

The Papua New Guinea Road Safety Review (April 2011) prepared by the NRSC has shown that a major effort is required to improve the safety of vehicles, drivers, roads and transport services, including better coordination of the many public agencies contributing to road safety.

This review will be further developed into a 20 year National Road Safety Strategy, and 5 year Road Safety Action Plan, to be prepared by the RTA (in the interim NRSC) in consultation with DOT, DOW, NRA and other stakeholders and monitored annually and reviewed every five years as part of the MTTP preparation and NTS review process.

Vehicle Roadworthiness

The number of vehicle testing stations will be reduced and the criteria for licensing as an Authorised Inspection Station (AIS) will be tightened and more vigorously enforced. Responsibility for approving vehicle testing stations will transfer to the RTA on its formation. The RTA will review the options for outsourcing the licensing and compliance inspections of AIS to a quality certification agency with the necessary credentials and independence.

Importation of motor vehicles will become subject to approval to ensure that transport equipment is fit for use on PNG roads in regards to mass and dimensions, vehicle construction rules, age and history of pre-use, and emission control equipment.

Consideration will be given to increasing the time period for retesting vehicles for roadworthiness (issue of safety certificates) to one year for vehicles of up to three years of age.

Vehicle First Registration and Annual Renewal

The issue and surrender of vehicle registration plates and the issue and renewal of registrations will be centralised through the Road Traffic Authority. The procedures for delegating vehicle annual relicensing to provincial governments and MVIL will be reviewed to ensure integrity, consistency, and accurate data recording and central reporting.

Driver Licensing and Testing

The procedures and supporting legislation for driving schools, driver training, testing and licensing will be reviewed with the aims of requiring a minimum number of hours of tuition from a qualified driving instructor, a tightening of the practical test and issue of competency certificates, review of the term for renewal of licences, requirements for older drivers and the introduction of defensive driving courses.

PMV and Taxi Safety

The use of unroadworthy PMVs and taxis will be countered through increased enforcement effort by the new Road Traffic Authority in coordination with the Police Traffic Division.

Safety Management Systems and Design Auditing

Road network managers (DOW, NRA, Provincial Government and NCDC) will be required to establish Safety Management Systems for identifying and rating safety hazards related to road design and traffic facilities, with a corresponding process for their mitigation. All road designs will be required to pass an independent safety audit by persons trained and certified to do so. An appropriation against road safety will be included in the Development Budgets for DOW and other road authorities, to encourage an increased focus on road safety improvements.

Road Safety Funding

The basis for funding road safety will be reviewed, including the present allocation of 5% levy on third party insurance to the NRSC. Consideration will be given to self-funding all road safety activities including the activities of the NRSC and on-road safety enforcement and accident reporting under the new RTA structure.