“Go slow, or you will complete a century on this highway.”
Believe us, scoring a century is no achievement – at least when it comes to dying. This signage posted along the national highway in Morena means to warn motorists against becoming the 100th person to turn up dead in a road accident due to rash driving.
Given the alarming rise in the number of road accidents on state and national highways in MP’s Morena, the district police have come up with the idea of installing novel signboards to discourage those in a tearing hurry from pushing the pedal into the floor.
These signboards, to be installed in accident-prone zones, will also mention the number of people who have been killed or injured there.
Police believe that mentioning the number of dead people would shock motorists into driving safely. Underlining the urgency for adopting such measures, Morena superintendent of police Vineet Khanna said: “In 2012, the number of people killed on highways in the district was 144. However, the number increased by 57% to 226 in 2014 within a span of just two years.”
Simply writing ‘caution’ on signboards was not working anymore, claimed Khanna. “To grab the attention of motorists, we have decided to mention the number of road mishap casualties,” he said, adding that six points on the highway have been identified as accident-prone.
The signboards are being designed by Morena police in coordination with the district administration and the National Highways Authority of India.
“This innovative idea is being introduced to save the life of people,” said Morena collector Vinod Sharma, adding that the project is being funded by the development and highway authorities.
The collector also spoke on how wild animals were the reason for some of the road accidents. “We tried putting signboards that said ‘Slow down for wildlife’, but nobody seemed to care. I think motorists will pay more attention if we mention that people died because of wild animals coming in front of their vehicles,” he said.
The process of designing and putting up the signboards will be completed in a week.