Although the Gurgaon expressway firm claims that it has put in place ‘world-class’ lighting fixtures on the stretch, there are several dark patches on the road.
In fact, the presence of such stretches is one of the main reason for the rise in accidents. The expressway operator, however, claims to be maintaining an average 40 lux (lux is the unit of illuminance) level of lighting against the required 20 lux.
There are diesel-run gensets to light up the expressway but at times lights go off more than 45 minutes on certain stretches. This is due to the failure of power supply from the state-run Dakshin Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam (DHBVN). This also exposes the operator’s claim of having a power back-up mechanism. And when the main carriageway is lit up, it’s the expressway service lanes that have no or poor lighting.
Payal Mehta, a daily commuter, said, “It seems the expressway has no power back-up arrangement as most stretches remain dark for hours together. It’s scary to drive alone at night. I don’t feel safe at all.”
Another commuter, Shashi Kadam, said, “Stray animals often cause accidents on the expressway. But when the road is not illuminated, the problem aggravates. I met a similar accident near the Jharsa crossing.”
The most vulnerable stretches in the service lanes are Iffco Chowk to Signature Tower, Sector-15 cattle crossing to Signature Tower in the Jaipur-Delhi direction, Jharsa crossing to Rajiv Chowk and beyond. The stretch from Hero Honda Chowk to Kherki Daula is dangerous. The service lanes are without lights and the roads are uneven. This causes breakdowns and accidents.