City roads unsafe for pedestrians | chandigarh | Hindustan Times
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City roads unsafe for pedestrians

City roads continue to be unsafe for pedestrians as 22 of them have been killed so far this year in road accidents. A total of 158 accidents, including those involving pedestrians, have been reported till date. Last year, 44 pedestrians died, while 40 lost their lives in 2012.

chandigarh Updated: Jul 30, 2014 11:15 IST
HT Correspondent

City roads continue to be unsafe for pedestrians as 22 of them have been killed so far this year in road accidents. A total of 158 accidents, including those involving pedestrians, have been reported till date. Last year, 44 pedestrians died, while 40 lost their lives in 2012.

Almost every month an accident involving a pedestrian is reported from the city. In January, three pedestrians died in different accidents.

With traffic increasing dayby-day and cars zipping on the roads on high speed, pedestrians are no more safe.

Sources in the traffic department said most of the accidents involving pedestrians took place while they were crossing the road. Speeding and jumping red lights also contribute to hit-andrun accidents.

Even though the Chandigarh police boast of pedestrian-friendly roads and time-to-time measures for ensuring safety of pedestrians across the city are taken, accidents are not uncommon. On most of the roads across the city, Zebra crossings, which are important for securing the safety of pedestrians, are not visible. Earlier in the year, the police had introduced Pelican crossing to clamp down accidents involving pedestrians.

Pelican (Pedestrian Light Controlled Crossing) is a system installed at Zebra lines on a traffic signal that allows people on foot to negotiate traffic by stopping traffic. It is a common part of traffic management in cities abroad. The structures have come up on the road dividing Sector 10 and 16, besides behind Neelam Cinema in Sector 17.

A survey by the police and the engineering wing had suggested installation of Pelican crossings at 16 points across the city.

UT superintendent of police (traffic) Maneesh Chaudhry said for the safety of pedestrians, foot overbridges have been suggested, especially at Industrial Area and Housing Board chowk. The engineering department had been requested to take necessary measures on the spots where the Zebra crossings have faded, he added.

President of Arrive Safe, an NGO catering to road safety, Harman Sidhu said, “Over the years, pedestrians have become most unsafe in the city. With the inner roads also being blocked by parking cars, there is very little space for pedestrians. As far as pavements are concerned, they too have been encroached upon for parking cars. Both police and municipal corporation have failed to address the needs of the walkers. The main roads are used by the sports utility vehicles to zip on high speed. Equitable space for people not vehicles should be priority for the authorities concerned.”

Crossing railings and medians is common in Hallomajra and Industrial Area, resulting in the occurrence of fatal accidents. Even though grills have been provided on the medians, residents, particularly colony dwellers and labourers, jump them resulting in mishaps.