Propriety demands giving way to emergency vehicles but this tends to be ignored by most people on roads. Keeping this in mind, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) has decided to reserve lanes for emergency vehicles and fine those found violating the norm in emergency times.
Quite similar to the lanes that were reserved during the Commonwealth Games 2010 for athletes and officials, this time the lanes will be reserved for any emergency situation to ensure precious time is not lost.
According to the proposal, Delhi government officials said, the extreme right lane of 162 roads across the city will be reserved. To ensure the roads are notified, a proposal has been sent to the transport department. The transport department will decide the fine that will be imposed on vehicles if they enter the reserve lanes during any emergency situation.
To ensure people are able to identify these roads, they will be painted blue with ‘disaster lanes’ written on them. “A one-kilometre stretch would have four such markings to ensure people get to know about these lanes,” added the official.
It is not uncommon to see an emergency vehicle caught in a traffic snarl on the city’s roads.
“Generally, Delhiites don’t give way to ambulances and other emergency vehicles. Sometimes when there is a building collapse, even big equipments have to be taken from once place to another. Most of the time they get stuck in traffic jams as lanes get blocked completely. The decision to reserve the lane will minimise the damage at the time of any disaster,” a senior government official said.
The government has identified roads that are near to the fire stations, police stations, deputy commissioners and SDM offices and hospitals.
A siren will be used to inform commuters when such lanes needed to be emptied. The DDMA will also carry out extensive awareness campaigns to ensure people are educated about these lanes.