Jaipur stands third in the road accidents in India. More than 152 pedestrians were killed in traffic accidents and 579 were injured in the year 2006. Despite rapidly increasing accident counts, no funds have been allocated for road safety till date. The increasing pedestrian accident rate in Jaipur alarmed CUTS and it initiated a unique project entitled, ‘Traffic Calming Strategies to Improve Pedestrian Safety In India’, in active partnership with the Department of Technology and Society, Lund University, Sweden and with the support of the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA), New Delhi.
The study aims to highlight the key flaws in the design of Indian roads and develop a manual, first of its kind in India. The manual will contain suggestions/recommendations on ‘remedial traffic calming strategies’ for concerned policy/decision makers, primarily in the departments of Police, Transport, Municipal Corporation, Development Authority and Public Works. About 24 sites in six locations would be studied for a detailed investigation of road crashes involving pedestrians.
The two-year research project was formally launched in Jaipur, Rajasthan, on March 03, 2008. The Transport Commissioner Jagdish Chandra presented the keynote speech followed by the expert comments of DIGP (Traffic) Kumar Indu Bhushan. Various stakeholders, academic experts and other non-governmental organisations (NGOs) participated in the event.
As a part of the project, a two-day training programme on selection of sites for the Indian team was organised in Jaipur, Rajasthan, on March 04, 2008. Prof. Christer Hydén, Department of Technology and Society, Lund University, Sweden along with Prof. Geetam Tiwari and Prof. Dinesh Mohan from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), New Delhi explained various important issues for selecting an appropriate site.
A primary survey was conducted to collect accident details from registered FIRs from the police for the year 2006. The data revealed many high-risk zones for pedestrians in the city; 31 locations were short listed and visited, out of which 17 locations have finally been selected for research studies. The field studies would include video recording of traffic for four days at each site. The Swedish expert Prof. Christer Hydén will provide remedial measures for each site after the analysis.