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27/11/2022 News

Training young motorcyclists in Africa to prevent accidents

In eight African countries, the NGO Amend set up a specific training course for moto-taxi drivers to reduce the number of road accidents. An initiative backed by the TotalEnergies Foundation program.

According to the WHO, road accidents cause approximately 1.35 million fatalities every year worldwide, and they are the main cause of death among young people aged 5 to 29. In Africa, where the number of road accidents is particularly high, motorcyclists account for over 40% of victims.

Over the last decade or so, the use of small motorcycles has significantly increased. In Burkina Faso for example, the number of motorcycles rose from 690,000 in 2010 to almost 1.8 million in 2015, i.e. 85% of the nation’s total automobile fleet. They are widely used in cities for getting around fast and zig-zagging through traffic jams. In rural areas, they are an affordable means of transport that gives people vital access to markets, healthcare and education.

In Africa, motorcycles are often used as taxis, and therefore provide jobs and an income for relatively uneducated young men, who have to support their families. There are many obvious advantages to motorcycles in Africa, but they are also associated with a very high road accident rate. Motorcyclists sometimes drive recklessly and do not respect the highway code.

Which is why, after conducting research in several African countries, the NGO Amend has developed a training course for motorcycle and moto-taxi drivers. The program is based on the basic training which is mandatory in the United Kingdom. It comprises a theoretical part on how a motorcycle works, legal requirements and the driver’s responsibilities, and then on the practical side, lessons on safe driving habits.

Since September 2020, with the support of the TotalEnergies Foundation, the training course has already been deployed in eight African countries. In Senegal, Togo and Tanzania to begin with, followed by Cameroon, Ghana, Guinea, Madagascar and Mozambique. More than 1,000 drivers have already completed the course.

TotalEnergies supports this initiative as it is in keeping with several of the Company’s commitments - making safety a priority as a core corporate value, contributing to the development of the countries where it is present, which include Africa, and supporting young people on the road to success.