Members of the Graduate Welfare Association (GWA), a non-governmental organisation (NGO) of Fazilka, submitted a memorandum to assistant commissioner (grievances), Fazilka, Kulpreet Singh, demanding measures to ensure road safety and save the lives of commuters.
They also submitted a report over road safety compiled by Navdeep Asija, general secretary, GWA, highlighting 14 accident-prone spots in Fazilka and accidents leading as many as 72 deaths in a year up to November 2014 in Fazilka district.
The report pointed out that as per the data available with the state transport commissioner, Punjab, on the registration of new vehicles, in 2012-13, an estimated 19,486 vehicles were registered in Fazilka district, that indicated that about 54 new vehicles came on roads in Fazilka district daily. The present estimate is about 60-65 vehicles daily, the report added.
The report also pointed out that after every fifth day, one person dies in road accident in Fazilka. In Punjab, the daily average is 14 people. On an average, two people meet with serious accidents daily in Fazilka.
Population-wise 3.7% of the total Punjab population lives in Fazilka district. Road fatalities-wise, the district contributes 1 to 1.5% to the state's accident fatalities. On an average, 5 to 6 people die due to road accidents in Fazilka district.
The data shows that more road accidents and deaths took place in May, June, November and December compared to other months of the year.The report pointed out that from the risk-wise Fazilka ranked at 21st position out of 22 districts in 2013 and 19th in 2012. Fazilka is below state average and considered a safest district.Fazilka district has 1,787km road network, which includes 113km of National Highway (NH-7) and 247km of state highways. 80-85% of the accidents take place on this network of national and state highways.
The report also pointed out that in 2014, '108' ambulance came to the aid of victims in 528 accident cases. 510 were taken to nearest hospitals and in 18 cases, first aid was given.
On an average, 40-45 vehicles are challaned by the traffic police in Fazilka district daily. The state average is 2,775 vehicles, said Asija in the report.
Senior superintendent of police (SSP) of Fazilka Swapan Sharma said that they had already identified accident- prone spots on national and state highways and the number of staff in the traffic cell has also been increased to tackle road accidents.