Economy

In 2015, 17 lives were lost every hour in accidents

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on January 20, 2018

With two-wheelers accounting for almost 29 per cent of road accidents, NitinGadkari invited ideas for lighter-weight helmets, which would lower the resistance of helmet users.   -  THE HINDU

Govt moves to make killer roads safe

“Driver’s fault” comes out as the single largest reason for road accidents, killings, and injuries on all roads in the country, according to official data.

The data, however, do not capture highway design and traffic engineering faults as the key reasons for accidents.

Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari, while saying that he is ashamed of such statistics, said that he disagreed with the point about “driver’s fault” being the key reason for accidents.

According to the data of the Transport Research Wing of the Transport Ministry, drivers’ fault has been revealed as the single most responsible factor (77.1 per cent) for road accidents, killings and injuries on all roads in the country.

Listing out steps to improve safety, Gadkari said one per cent of highway project cost will be spent on road safety. He has also asked for good designs for crash barriers.

Death on national highways has sharply increased. In this context, he also referred to the point about highways’ safety features such as service lanes being taken off in order make projects “financially viable” during the UPA regime, something the NDA has tried to work around by providing funds specifically building service lanes.

With two-wheelers accounting for almost 29 per cent of road accidents, Gadkari invited ideas for lighter-weight helmets, which would lower the resistance of helmet users.

In a grim reminder of the safety record – or the lack of it – of Indian roads, 1.46 lakh people were killed in road accidents in calendar year 2015, up 4.6 per cent against 2014. More than half of these are in the 15-24 age group.

Road accidents were at 5.01 lakh in 2015, up 2.5 per cent. Road accident injuries have also increased to over 5 lakh in 2015, up 1.4 per cent. In effect, each hour, India sees 57 accidents resulting in loss of 17 lives.

Overloaded vehicles accounted for 17.2 per cent of road fatalities and 15.4 per cent of accidents. Gadkari reiterated the need for air-conditioned cabins in trucks, which form part of truck body code being finalised.

“In India’s heat, it is important to have better working conditions for the truckers, which will lead to improvement in safety,” he said.

Published on June 09, 2016

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