Locals demand safety measures on ‘killer flyover’ in Doon, officials blame rash driving
Balliwala flyover, inaugurated as the first flyover of the state in Dehradun in July last year, has claimed seven lives in accidents so fardehradun Updated: Sep 03, 2017 20:05 IST
Balliwala flyover, inaugurated as the first flyover of the state in Dehradun in July last year, has claimed seven lives in accidents so far.
Despite repeated demands to step up preventive measures on the flyover - dubbed as the “killer flyover” by locals - authorities are yet to take any action.
Questions have been raised every now and then by locals about the design and safety standards of the two-lane flyover, which they alleged was “too narrow” and had a “sharp curve” that led to the accidents.
Officials, however, attributed the accidents to rash driving.
On the night of August 29, an undergraduate student died after a two-wheeler he was riding in crashed onto the parapet, hurling him down onto the service road. The youth succumbed to his injuries while being treated at a hospital.
In January, a national-level shooter and an undergraduate student, who was pursuing a course in Australia, were killed after their motorcycle collided with a pole on the flyover. Another youth died in March. In October last year, three youth died in two separate accidents on the flyover.
“The killer flyover has already claimed seven lives since its inauguration... is the government waiting for another casualty before taking any precautionary measures?” questioned an irate Suresh Pandey, a resident of GMS Road, where the flyover is located.
Ravi Semwal, a shopkeeper near Balliwala Chowk, said: “The flyover takes a sharp turn midway, which becomes a danger, especially during nights.”
When contacted, Dehradun superintendent of police (traffic) Dhirendra Gunjyal said traffic police had on its part “written to the national highways wing to put in place a safety mesh along both sides of the flyover” to prevent fatalities due to crashing or falling down from the flyover.
Public works department officials, however, said there were no design or structural faults in the flyover and put the blame on “rash or drunken driving” instead.
“All the victims in the flyover accidents were youngsters, while some of them were found drunk as per reports, others were driving in very high speed even though we have placed speed-limit signs on both sides of the flyover,” Hari Om Sharma, chief engineer of PWD (national highways), told HT.
“Nevertheless, we’ll be putting railings on the outer curve of the curvature soon...the police, too, should increase vigil to check drunken and rash driving on the stretch,” he said.