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09 Jan

Makerere design app to monitor accidents

The Police, together with Makerere University School of Public Health, have
introduced a digital flash system to help locate accident scenes, victims and vehicles involved.
The digital flash system is operated using a mobile phone on which the app has been installed by the traffic officers.
The app also notifies the Police on the number of people who died in the accident.
Dr Olive Kobusingye, the accident and emergency surgeon, explained that they developed the app to help the Police and health facilities collect the right data on the number of people who die in road accidents.
 “There is no proper data on the number of people who die in road accidents since the Police have been using the manual way of counting, yet sometimes there are people who are crashed beyond recognition,” she said recently.
During the launch of the system, Kobusingye, however, said the current system might have challenges since health facilities do not have a digitalised system to help the Police capture information.
She said traffic officers at all stations will be trained on how the system operates and they will be required to have smartphones.
The Police head of ICT, James Lule, said the app will monitor all roads. Its centre will be at the Police head office in Naguru, Kampala, where all the information will be collected.
Lule explained that the system has two portals – the phone and web portal, which accesses statics.
Some of the main causes of accidents, according to the Police, are speeding, bodabodas, drunk-driving and use of other substances.
The traffic Police spokesperson, Charles Ssebambulidde, said the system would help the Police to identify why a particular area is accident-prone and devise solutions.
The programme has been piloted and used in Mbale, Sironko and Kampala, where data collected has been proved to be accurate.
The system will later be launched nationwide.
Experts speak out
The head of accidents and emergency unit at Mulago National Referral Hospital, Dr Alex Bangirana, said: “This is a useful system, which will help us collect data so that we know how many people get injured and plan for them.”
He said it is an easy way to collect information unlike before. At the accident and emergency unit Mulago, he said, they receive about 100 patients a day, of which between 40 and 50 are admitted. Of these, 70% are crash victims.

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