- Saied listened to the testimonies of several locals who said that the area has claimed very many lives.
- The accident is considered one the worst in the region.
- Tunisia was reported to have the second-worst traffic deaths in North Africa, behind the war-torn country Libya.
As the death toll rises in a Tunisian tour bus accident to 26, President Kais Saied has promised to deal with the aftermath of the accident and ensure road safety. “I will do everything in my power to deal with the consequences of the disaster and fix what can be fixed,” he said. The President added that all those responsible for the poor conditions of the road will be seriously dealt with.
Saied, who visited the accident scene in the company of the outgoing Prime Minister, Youssef Chahed, listened to the testimonies of several locals who said that the area has claimed very many lives. The president added that serious action was to be taken to ensure road users were safe. The Speaker of the House of People’s Representative (HPR) also visited those injured and were being treated in Charles Nicolle hospital highlighting the need to offer help to their families.
As a result, two counseling units were set up in Charles Nicolle hospital and Beja regional hospital for the victims. According to health ministry, the death toll rose to 26 as four people succumbed to injuries. The accident is considered one the worst in the region. “The bus had fallen into a ravine crashing into an iron barrier,” the Interior Ministry had said. The accident occurred in Snoussi locality, between Ain Drahem (Jendouba governorate) and Amdoun (Beja governorate), Sunday morning.
The cause of the accident is not clear as forensic experts are carrying out investigations but the poor road conditions are blamed for the numerous accidents. Tunisia was reported to have the second-worst traffic deaths in North Africa, behind the war-torn country Libya. This is as per the World Health Organisation (WHO) report of 2015.
According to Global Road Safety Partnership (GRSP), every year more than 1,500 people are killed on Tunisia’s roads. However, there are estimated to be closer to 2,700 deaths— an acceptably high number. Of the annual fatalities, drivers and passengers account for 48% of all road deaths, with over 80% being male.
Tunisia has adopted a wide range of best road safety practices. However, seat-belt laws are not applicable to rear seat occupants, and no child restraint legislation has been passed. Additionally, measures such as drinking-driving are not well enforced, with no random breath testing/police checks in effect.
According to a state-run news agency TAP, there was another tragedy when a mother and her 26 year-old daughter were struck by a train in Dahmani, in the governorate of El Kef Monday morning. The young woman accompanied by the mother was vomiting on the rail truck, she died on the spot while the mother succumbed to injuries in hospital. The duo were taking home the body of a cousin who had perished in the bus accident in Snoussi.