Kenya is one of the most developed nations in sub-Saharan Africa in terms of infrastructure. There is an ever-devel- oping road network complimented by a revived rail network in the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR).Due to this, a number of transit-oriented developments have sprung up along the roads. As a result a lot of towns along the highway have developed into transit-oriented towns as illustrated in fig 1-1
In the case of the Nairobi-Mombasa Highway, it holds importance due to it being part of the Northern Corridor and being the main transport route for freight transport to and from the port of Mombasa. The Northern Corridor is defined as all the infrastructures and facilities serving the landlocked countries that are signatories of the Northern Corridor Transit Agreement (NCTA) in respect to freight transport to and from the port of Mombasa in Kenya. 1 Due to the busy nature of the Nairobi-Mombasa Highway, one prominent type of transit-oriented development that has sprung up are rest areas. Rest areas are public facilities, located next to a large thoroughfare such as a highway, expressway, or freeway, at which passengers can rest, eat, or refuel without exiting onto secondary roads.2
Rest areas are a critical component of the highway system since they contribute towards the safety and comfort of road users.
1.2.0 PROBLEM STATEMENT
There is minimal research information on rest areas and their effectiveness towards road travel that is available for use in the planning and design of rest area facilities at national level. Most studies on the subject are not localized. The existing information is generic in nature and lacks documentation of information sources.
There is inadequate parking provided for trucks at the weighbridges and the adjacent rest areas forcing a spillover onto the highway creating poor visibility and unnecessary traffic jams. This causes danger to both truck drivers and other motorists as illustrated in fig 1-2
All drivers are vulnerable to fatigue. In particular professional truck drivers who spend a large amount of time on the road undertaking long journeys have legal requirements to stop and rest under fatigue management legislation. The Highway Code recommends that one should take a break of at least 15 minutes every 2 hours. Taking into account this information it becomes apparent that there aren’t enough rest areas on our roads. This is a major contributing factor towards road accidents as drivers undertake long distances accumulating fatigue.