Business World, May 19, 2020
CUTS International along with its partners have been maintaining a ‘Road Crash Tracker’ to document road crash deaths and traffic violations during the lockdown since March 25 until now. Road crashes killed 1,51,417 people in 2018.
So far, during the lockdown a total of 1,137 crashes are recoded nationwide and 274 road crash deaths are reported. CUTS International along with its partners have been maintaining a ‘Road Crash Tracker’ to document road crash deaths and traffic violations during the lockdown since March 25 until now. Road crashes killed 1,51,417 people in 2018.
Recently, more than 10 migrant labourers, One Doctor who was going hospital for his Covid19 related duty, and several others were killed and more than 15 injured when some trucks in which they were travelling overturned, head on collision and vehicles rammed over also happened in various cities of Rajasthan like Jaipur, Kota, Bharatpur and Bundi districts. While there has been a dip in the absolute number of road crash fatalities, the ratio of deaths to road crashes has remained unchanged. CUTS International, that seeks to promote road safety in India through improved governance of the sector, is deeply concerned that road crashes and traffic violations have continued to put many lives in danger even during the national lockdown.
Risk factors like speeding, driving while fatigued, not wearing helmets, etc. continue to be responsible for the fatalities across the state said by George Cheriyan, Director CUTS International. He further added that speeding on empty roads has been one of the most common reasons for road crash deaths across the State. Pedestrians in urban areas, as well as State and National Highways, remain at tremendous risk from speeding vehicles. There is an urgent need to effectively enforce speed limits.
While CUTS welcomes the decision of the Government of Rajasthan to run buses for ferrying migrants, students and stranded tourists to their hometowns, we remain concerned about the safety of drivers and passengers on the journeys by road. Recent media reports indicate that driver fatigue combined with speeding has been responsible for recent crashes.
In order to assist the Government of Rajasthan to keep the road-users, especially passenger using the migrant bus services safe during these journeys, we, at CUTS International along with its Road Safety Network have prepared a draft set of safety protocols submitted to the Additional Chief Secretary, Secretary, Dept. of Transport and MD, Rajasthan roadways, Government of Rajasthan. CUTS urge the Secretary to direct the concerned state authorities operating the said services to follow these or similar guidelines to prevent road crashes and consequent deaths and injuries.
CUTS also urge the Government of Rajasthan to add up the road safety provisions in the lockdown guidelines and also to make the required rules for all the new provisions of MVA Act, 2019 at the earliest for its effective implementation.
This news can also be viewed at: