THE seven Dynamos Football Club supporters who died on the spot and 16 others that were seriously injured when a vehicle they were travelling in burst a rear tyre and veered off the road on the Harare-Bulawayo Highway on Saturday must be a lesson to all vehicle owners.
This accident has little to do with the fact that the deceased were Dynamos fans but more to do with the fact that the accident was caused by a faulty vehicle.
As police spokesperson Chief Superintendent Paul Nyathi said, the frequency of accidents caused by tyre bursts has become worrying.
He urged motorists to check the expiry dates of their tyres and desist from using second-hand tyres especially when travelling long distances.
Most of these tragic accidents involve public vehicles. The police, the media and many other stakeholders are constantly pleading with drivers of public transport in general to be cautious on the roads and to follow all the road rules, regulations and abide by the laws of the Highway Code.
Road signs and markings are not there to decorate our highways; they actually serve a purpose of warning drivers about the possible dangers that lie in our roads.
So when we see a speed limit, it is important to travel below the restricted speed. Speed limits are there for the protection of drivers, pedestrians and the vehicles. Curves, animals, pedestrians, blind spots . . . all these are dangers that pose a threat to human life if drivers do not heed the warnings on the road.
Vehicle owners, especially those that own public-ferrying vehicles, should also ensure that their vehicles are roadworthy and desist from putting on the road vehicles with malfunctions as dangerous as worn-out tyres.
If drivers travel within the stipulated speed limits, even in the event of a burst tyre or any other mishap, they may be in a position to control the vehicle and avert tragedy.
Every little instruction in the Highway Code is there for our safety. Accidents that happen on the highways road usually include many vehicles that would not otherwise be involved if they keep the stipulated breaking distance for example.
Small mistakes on the road can cost lives. Small errors like failure to stop before a give way sign or a stop sign, failure to indicate before overtaking, straddling across a continuous line et cetera. Many people always think they are the only ones who deserve to be on time and drive impatiently.
It is good to arrive on time for whatever business one has to attend to but it is vital to ensure that you always arrive. Even Oliver Mtukudzi sang in one of his early hits that â€œkumhanya hakusi kusvikaâ€.
And by driving in a rush (usually recklessly) one endangers the lives of many other people who are usually innocent.