India needs to halve road accident deaths by the year 2020
INVC NEWS New Delhi
India being a signatory to the United Nation’s Decade of Action plan for Road Safety across the world aiming to reduce road fatalities by 50% by the year 2020. India accounts for about 11 per cent of the total 1.3 million road accident fatalities worldwide despite having only one per cent of the world's vehicle population. About 1.46 lakh people were killed in around 4.9 lakh road accidents in the year 2017.
"The UN General Assembly which recognised the impact of road accidents on global health, adopted 2011-2020 as the UN Decade of Action for road fatalities and set a target to reduce them by 50% by 2020. Inidia also stands committed to undertake various Road Safety Measures to bring down road related fatalities by 50%. Accordingly, the Nodal Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) which has already taken several initiatives needs to take more steps on sustained basis across India." said MR K K Kapila, Chairman, Geneva Based International Road Federation (IRF) woking for better and safer roads world wide.
"The existing Motor Vehicles Act is outdated and the same is being modified, duly recognising the need for proper enforcement of traffic rules, and retrofitting of the vehicles plying on the roads as also the penalties for violation. The amended Motor Vehicle Bill which is before the Parliament for approval will go a long way in supporting the multi-pronged efforts being undertaken to control the menace of road accidents in our country. The early passage of this Bill through the Parliament needs your wholehearted support in order to save valuable human lives lost due to road accidents and the consequential economic loss to the nation." said Mr Kapila
"Several measures towards improving road safety including much awaited amendment in the Motor Vehicle Act (MVA) improvements in roads from engineering perspective, road safety audits at all stages of road construction beginning right from the planning stage besides identification and remedy of black spots which account for almost 90% of road fatalities in India should be immeditely taken to reduce fatal road accidents." said Mr Kapila.
"IRF has also suggested Road safety audits on state road networks by the state government. Worldwide road safety audits are done to reduce road accidents, the audit includes improving the fault of road design which is major cause of road accidents. IRF can help in training road safety auditors as it has already trained about 500 road auditors till date in the country." added MR Kapila.
"IRF has also suggested to MoRTH to construct less but safe roads, the Government should have emphasis on construction of new roads with safety features such as underpasses, flyovers and without black spots as removing black spots and taking other safety measures on existing roads is more costlier. " he added.
"The other suggestions for making roads safer include reducing Travelling speeds in areas where pedestrians are interacting with vehicles and those speeds must be properly enforced, stopping dangerous activities such as uncontrolled stops by buses, illegally parked vehicles that may force pedestrians to walk in the road, construction of Median fences, footbridges, mid-block signals, speed humps and speed zone control markings are being installed across the highways in the country" he said,.
The other suggestions include enforcement of traffic rules and provisions of Motor Vehicle Act 1988 Enforcement of these rules include wearing of helmet, use of reflective tapes by trucks and buses, mandatory fitment of side and rear under run protection in trucks and buses and strict action against over loading of vehicles, ABS brakes for Two wheelers above 125 cc, rear view sensors for motor vehicles.