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An Antonov An-26 freighter lost one of its propellers while it was en route to Paloch, South Sudan, from Juba. The aircraft returned to Juba without further incident.

The left-hand propeller got detached and fell on the highway, fortunately without causing any injuries on the ground. The incident occurred on Thursday, May 20.

The airport officials reported that an Antonov freighter returned to Juba Airport with just one propeller. After this incident, the Civil Aviation Authority of South Sudan decided to ban the aircraft type from normal operations.

In a statement, David Subek, the head of Sudan’s CAA, said: “I issued that order after the incident of that Antonov AN-26 propeller which is said to have fallen off.”

“They have to immediately cease operation until further investigation is done,” he added. - Sharad Ranabhat,

Firefighters attempt to put out the fire. Photo NTV


There were heightened tensions at Entebbe airport when fire broke out at the two jet fuel tank facilities today evening. 

Fred Bamwesige, the acting director-general Uganda Civil Aviation Authority (UCAA) says the safety, security team and firefighters were dispatched to stop the fire from spreading to other jet fuel tanks.

According to Bamwesige, the extent of what has been damaged and the cause of the fire are yet to be determined. The jet fuel tanks are less than 50 metres from the passenger terminal and at least 60 metres from the airside.

As a result, such an incident can disrupt operations such as the movement of both passengers and aircraft in and out of the airport.

The airport currently has two jet fuel tanks and a hydrant. However, due to safety and security concerns, UCAA has set up four fuel tanks and a hydrant at least a kilometre away from the airside.

The new site for the fuel tanks is near Lake Victoria shores. The tanks can store 10 million litres at ago. Passengers were bemused by the lack of fire warning system at the airport - with authorities instead deploying an ambulance siren to warn people to stay clear. URN/The Observer

LIVES CUT SHORT: The accident scene. Photo The Star


A new campaign backed by the United Nations seeks to reduce the official speed limit in urban areas to 30 kilometres per hour.

In Kenya and most countries, the speed limit in urban places is 50km/h, but only reduces to 30km/h near schools.

The campaign comes at the start of the sixth UN Global Road Safety Week, which commences Tuesday and ends on May 23.

At least 3,000 Kenyans are killed in road crashes every year, according to the National Transport and Safety Authority.

The majority of the victims are pedestrians, motorcyclists, and cyclists mostly in urban areas, NTSA says.

The World Health Organization, which supports the new global campaign, says deaths did not reduce during the lockdown due to speeding.

Google mobility reports show movement decreased overall due to Covid-19 lockdowns last year and people working from home.

“Fatality numbers have not decreased in the same proportion because people drive at higher speeds,” WHO said in a statement.

In December last year, NTSA said fatalities in Kenya increased to 3,663 in 2020, compared to 3,508 in 2019. 

“We need a new vision for creating safe, healthy, green and liveable cities,” WHO boss Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement.

“Low-speed streets are an important part of that vision. As we recover and rebuild from Covid-19, let’s make safer roads for a safer world.”

The global drive, called Streets for Life Campaign, is led by Zoleka Mandela, a granddaughter of Nelson Mandela, who lost her daughter in a road traffic crash in South Africa in 2010.  

Safe Drive Africa, a Kenyan road traffic lobby, supports the initiative.

“We are losing more people to road accidents than to Covid-19, and we are not putting in similar efforts to stop accidents,” Safe Drive Africa executive director Isaac Mutashi said.

Several heads of UN and international agencies, NGOs and private companies have signed an open letter calling for 30km/h speed limits in cities worldwide.

The letter highlights the need to lower speed to achieve the target of the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2021-2030 and the sustainable development goals.    

Evidence shows that 30km/h speed where people mix with traffic not only saves lives, but also promotes walking, cycling and a move towards zero-carbon mobility.

Last year's Stockholm Declaration on Road Safety urged member states to address speed management as a key road safety intervention.

In particular, it urged countries to “strengthen law enforcement to prevent speeding and mandate a maximum road travel speed of 30km/h as appropriate in areas where vulnerable road users and vehicles mix in a frequent and planned manner…”

The Stockholm Declaration based its call for low-speed streets on studies in cities such as Graz, Austria; London, UK; New York, USA; and Toronto, Canada, which indicated that 30km/h speed limits and zones yielded reductions – often significant – in road traffic crashes, injuries and deaths. - John Muchangi, The Star

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