China Harbour learns the hard way to respect laws

Chinese construction company China Harbour & Engineering Company (CHEC) yesterday learnt the hard way not to cut corners when it comes to Namibia’s laws. More than fourteen of the company’s tipper trucks were suspended from the road yesterday, after these heavy vehicles were found to be unroadworthy and also overloaded.
A joint operation between the municipal traffic department of Walvis Bay and the Roads Authority was carried out at the harour town’s weighbridge yesterday where mostly construction vehicles were inspected, leading to the summary suspension of CHEC’s trucks from the road. The construction industry in general will be targeted by the traffic authorities in the days to come to improve road safety.
The tipper trucks are hauling rock and stone for CHEC for the construction of the container terminal on reclaimed land in the port of Walvis Bay.
It was understood yesterday the Namibia Ports Authority (Namport), which is the client of CHEC for the terminal project, is viewing the incident in a very serious light. Unroadworthy vehicles are one of the main causes of the high accident rate on Namibian roads and the subsequent death toll and injuries. For CHEC to allow unroadworthy vehicles shows a lack of sensitivity towards Namibia’s current dilemma with road accidents, the death toll and injuries.
Overloading is also a lack of respect for Namibia’s road infrastructure and Walvis Bay’s street network from the side of CHEC. Apart from causing accidents, overloaded heavy vehicles cause severe damage each day to streets as well as national road infrastructure, at the expense of the Namibian taxpayer.
CHEC could not be reached for comment.
Despite the CHEC-incident, Walvis Bay traffic chief Eben Platt also warned all Walvis Bay residents and other road users yesterday that actions are stepped up in the latest campaign to increase road safety. Overloading, roadworthiness of vehicles, speeding, overtaking and drinking and driving offenders should not expect mercy from the law.
Road users are reminded of basic road safety conduct which include adhering to road signs, specifically stop signs which motorists often fail to adhere to. Overtaking is also a key evil upon which law enforcers will focus.
The campaign will also focus on motorists who failed to pay traffic fines. Platt called upon motorists with overdue fines to visit the Natis-office. When a person fails to pay a fine, a predetermined court date becomes relevant. When the person fails to appear in court, a warrant of arrest is issued. These people risk being arrested anywhere at any time. “We can assist”, he explained.

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