Pioneering technology in Africa looks ahead of the curve

Achiri Nji, and his business Traveler, pioneer a new technology in Cameroon that reduces traffic accidents and their impact by sharing information and data to other road users, transportation companies, and emergency responders. A sobering Economist 4 article states, “Forty of the 50 countries with the highest road-death rates across all ages are in Africa.” In many countries, car wrecks kill more than malaria.

Achiri and Traveler won a $50,000 Pioneer Award in the 2016 African Entrepreneurship Award. Funding has helped Achiri take his prototype to market, and, to increase the app’s features and usability. With Traveler, Achiri intends to help resolve the difficult reality of traffic mortality.

Traveler does “something even the most advanced countries haven’t done,” says Achiri. The mobile application downloaded for road users gives live updates on road and traffic conditions, rates and monitors bus drivers, reports problems, and connects accident victims to early medical responders and concerned family members. The app utilizes GPS to compile and monitor the speed of buses and cars. And, compiled data and information acts as a predictor of accidents and danger out on the roads.

The Traveler app, available for download on Google Play.
The Traveler app, available for download on Google Play.

Big Data Provides a Value Add for Private Road Users and Companies

As of late 2017, the company had two major transportation clients paying yearly subscriptions, with 10 more interested. The government of Cameroon is interested in using Traveler to increase road safety. And, with the increasing importance of data, Traveler is poised to enter the game with useful information for a large audience. Achiri says:

“We track interurban public transport buses and connect passengers to families, and hospitals, automatically. We automatically record the location, speed, bus number and number of passengers in a bus and forward this information to road safety teams, each time a driver of a bus drives above recommended speed limits. We have made it possible to use ‘big data analytics’ to monitor the performance of drivers on the highway and give them advice concerning events susceptible to cause an accident. We literarily can predict an accident based on a driver’s speed/location coefficient (big data).”

For travelers, family members, bus and car companies, insurance companies, and governments, Traveler provides a value add. Quick access to information on roads, speeding, and accidents saves lives and provides useful steps for Cameroon, as it tries to decrease their accident rates.

Achiri, second from left, shows some of the new technology his team purchased with Award funding.
Achiri, second from left, shows some of the new technology his team purchased with Award funding.

On the Ground Support for Travelers

Besides just the usefulness of a phone in hand and compiled data, for travelers involved in accidents, the app includes practical information and basic medical advice in the unfortunate even that someone is in an accident. Basic medical assistance can be a matter of life and death and Traveler empowers their users in these situations, before emergency help arrives.

In Cameroon, passengers crave better travel experiences with peace of mind. Traveler delivers this peace of mind – and measurable data for monitoring safety by multiple groups. Winning the African Entrepreneurship Award allows Achiri to grow and improve his product for the Cameroonian market and take road safety beyond the borders of Cameroon, improving lives one traveler at a time.