1.46 lakh lives lost on Indian roads last year

1.46 lakh lives lost on Indian roads last year: An official report, released by Union Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari on Thursday, said 1.46 lakh people were killed in road accidents in India in 2015 — an increase of five per cent...

Prevent accidents
June 10, 2016

This refers to the report “1.46 lakh lives lost on Indian roads last year” (The Hindu, June 10).  Add to this the deaths in rail accidents (including those caused by suburban local trains) and in water bodies. And the number of people incapacitated by injuries in accidents and deaths in accidents where bodies are not identified. This will add up to a staggering figure. Our approach to accidents is still pedestrian and casual. High time we thought in terms of ‘zero’ accident days and ‘zero’ accident zones, by improving safety systems, instead of finding comfort in reduced rate of percentage increase per annum!
We should put on hold further addition of luxury vehicles on roads and introduction of new transport systems in the medium term, till we are able to ensure safety of people traveling in the existing ones. Breach of safety regulations on road need to be monitored and addressed. Public transport system should be told not to overload vehicles. This must apply to trains too. Vehicles which are not roadworthy should be compulsorily removed from roads. A central law insisting identity proof for those using public transport system including trains and even for those who walk on footpaths is an idea whose time has come in India.
M G Warrier, Mumbai


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