Story ideas for journalists reporting on road safety

Dear Journalists,

We need to up our game now that the Annual Road Safety Week is not far away….early December and with activities lasting the whole month.

Here are some ideas to start with and many more are coming from us.

1. You must have noticed that we have had a quite terrible week on the roads. Those near these incidents below should follow them up and dig deeper. This is what happened:

  • A bus caught fire on Masaka Road not far from Mpigi last Tuesday.
  • Passengers lost property, although there were no casualties.
  • Three people were killed in a head-on crash near Akageti township on Masaka-Mbarara Road over the weekend.
  • A California Company bus crashed in Luweero yesterday. Several people were injured. 
  • Three people were knocked dead in Namutumba on Monday.

What was the cause of these incidents? Give updates and follow-up. What does Police say? Give us details of the dead and injured?

2. Let us do a roundup of 2021. Check with Regional Traffic Police Office (You can also check with the regional Police spokesperson. Get the following details:

  • How many road crashes have happened in that region since January 2021? How many people have perished? How many are injured? How many men, women and children? Is there information about the ages? 
  • What have been the most common causes of these crashes?
  • Look for a breakdown of the crashes by type of motor vehicle:
    • Heavy vehicles/lorries/ trailers
    • Buses
    • Light vehicles
    • Taxis
    • Boda Bodas
  • How many pedestrians were both killed and injured / how many Boda Boda passengers?

This story should be done as soon as possible preferably before the end of November. After you have published in your media, we can use the details to piece together a big national story.

3. Stories about the Police

What are the Police and urban authorities planning to improve road safety in urban centres and on highways?  This helps in building rapport with the Police. 

4. Prepare a human interest feature on persons 

  • Can you locate at least two or three families of the dead and injured….. how are they coping? Challenges? How did the death of a dear one in a road crash change their lives?
  • Attempt to do a picture story or a creative radio story about safe spaces for access to schools.  Highlight those that have road zones clearly secured for students to walk to school.  Try to ask school heads and teachers what they will do to improve road safety for school children. Remember most of your media houses have an online presence where you can post pictures.

DO NOT FORGET TO SHARE WITH US THOSE STORIES YOU PUBLISH. We can later make a big joint story out of them. 

Also, remember to include statistics in your story…… statistics which you understand. Include voices too… We need voices… of those affected:  the injured in hospitals, the dependents, the medical staff, the Police and local leaders. 

Publish a story every week. Rachel, Bernard and I are waiting to support you. Drop us a call. 


Image by Austin Krause from Pixabay

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