29 August 2016
Population increase, advancement in technology and the growing demand for modern transportation have given rise to a major increase in the use of automobile.
In Nigeria for example, a total of five million vehicles were registered between 2013 and 2015. The National Bureau of Statistics says a quarter of these vehicles were registered in Lagos alone.
In major cities around the world, traffic build up at certain hours of the day termed “rush hour’’ or “peak period”.
With Lagos State having a fair share of traffic difficulties, Lagos State government has worked over the years to reduce this menace that has made the mega city a nightmare to many since the turn of the 1990s.
One of the obvious strategies adopted by Lagos State to tackle the problem was the establishment of a scheme of special corps to assist existing agencies charged with traffic control and safety on highways.
In spite of this, heavy traffic has persisted on Lagos roads.
Asides being the major cause of road traffic, motor vehicles are one of the largest sources of pollution worldwide.
Slow moving traffic emits more pollution than when cars move at freeway speeds.
Air pollution refers to the presence of foreign substances in the air that don’t belong there, or excessive amount of certain impurities that wouldn’t harm us otherwise.
In 2012, the World Health Organisation (WHO) described outdoor air pollution as a “major environmental risk to health,” linking it to 3.7 million premature deaths per year.
Air pollution contributes to lung cancer, asthma and other respiratory diseases, and it has been associated with heart disease and stroke.
To reduce the amount of pollution exposure while waiting in traffic, it is recommended that the fan in the car gets turned on such that air circulates internally. Recirculating the air prevents pollution from entering from outside.
For pedestrians, however, they should stick to walking only on walk routes if there is any. If there is none, they should walk as far away from the road as possible to avoid the fumes.
In addition to causing air pollution, static traffic induces fatigue in drivers leading to untoward consequences in many instances.
Author: Dotun Obatuyi
My name is Dotun Obatuyi (Dotunoba), I hail from Osun state, a public health scientist (monitoring and evaluation specialist), my keen interests are researching, critiquing and writing feature articles on health, science and technology as well as issues around the globe.