29 May 2003

Tonga tries to combat a soaring road death toll

5:30 pm on 29 May 2003

The acting deputy police commander in Tonga, Kuli Taulahi, says deteriorating driver behaviour has led to a leap in the road toll.

In the 5 months this year 12 people have died on the roads compared with a total of 8 in the whole of 2002.

Mr Taulahi says he is disapointed that drivers are ignoring road signs, speeding excessively and driving drunk.

He says police are conducting educational sessions on local radio and he says they will soon crack down on the bad drivers.

But Mr Taulahi says first they need more speed radars as a deterrent.

"In the next month or so all stations might have a radar with them... at the moment it is only one we have so far.... but we order our radars from the United States, they will be here very soon"

Acting Deputy Commander Kuli Taulahi.