Cameroonian startup to launch road safety app


Cameroonian startup Traveler will in October launch its road safety app designed to ensure speed limits are respected on African roads and guarantee quick response in the event of accidents.

The Traveler app, which is currently going through testing, is a passenger monitoring app that tracks the speed and location of passengers with or without internet connectivity.

It automatically alerts drivers when they travel above recommended speed limits, and at the same time alerts authorities. In the event of an emergency, road safety teams, emergency services and families are notified.

Chief executive officer (CEO) and founder Achiri Arnold Nji told Disrupt Africa the app was necessary as road accidents are the leading cause of death in Cameroon, with reckless drivers killing more than malaria and HIV/AIDS combined, and four times more than militant group Boko Haram.

“An even more dire problem is the inability to notify families when these accidents occur. The government of Cameroon is trying very hard to reduce road accidents, but is failing miserably,” he said. “So we have developed our platform, which works with the same capacity as a speedometer, a speed radar and a black box combined, all using a mobile phone.”

The aim of Traveler is to make it possible to record the location, speed, name of driver and number of passengers in a bus, and forward this information to road safety teams, emergency teams, hospitals and families of victims when an accident occurs.

The app itself will not be publicly available until October, but the startup has already been recognised with a number of different awards. It is seeking funding with the hope of being established across Cameroon by February next year, and expanding across Africa by the start of 2019.

Traveler will monetise by taking a share from fines obtained from speeding detected through the app, while it will also sell its data to insurance companies for risk assessment. Although registration of passengers is free, there will be a premium version that would allow it to cover the medical expenses of victims in the event of an accident.

“We are converting mobile phones to replace the speedometer, speed radars and a black box. We have to put the best product into the market,” Nji said. “Notwithstanding the fact our app already works well in most parts, we have to make sure it’s the best possible app to fight against over-speeding and road accidents.”

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Passionate about the vibrant tech startups scene in Africa, Tom can usually be found sniffing out the continent's most exciting new companies and entrepreneurs, funding rounds and any other developments within the growing ecosystem.

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