Punjab witnesses a number of fatal accidents on roads. It has been seen that many accidents, in which precious lives are lost, are caused by overloaded and overspeeding tractor-trolleys. Overloaded tractor-trolleys, travelling on the roads, is a common sight.
Various people have lost their lives in tractor-trolley accidents but, despite this, the administration does not seem to be taking the issue seriously to mandate some strict laws against the practice of overloading them.
Trucks and tractor-trolleys are commonly overloaded with wheat straw and paddy straw. They are loaded beyond capacity in such a way that tractors or trucks are hardly visible under the load. The load bulges out on both sides leaving no space for passing of other vehicles from sides. These overloaded vehicles also overturn suddenly when they lose balance and lead to accidents.
Under the motor vehicles Act, one cannot load any vehicle beyond its capacity, however during the harvesting season, a tractor-trolley is overloaded and is made to ferry a load of more than two trolleys.
A trolley, with a loading capacity of 2,000 kg, is mostly loaded with stuff weighing more than 4,000 to 5,000 kg. These overloaded trolley and trucks usually cause traffic jams even during nights on highways.
The administration has also turned a blind eye to the daily increasing number of accidents due to overloaded and unregistered tractor-trolleys.
Trolleys attached to tractors do not have brakes, and when a driver applies emergency brakes to the tractor, trolleys sometimes skid or overturn.
A few days ago, a trolley, overloaded with paddy straw, skided on the Bathinda-Mansa highway when the driver applied brakes, due to which the trolley lost its balance and whole paddy straw got spread on the road which led to the blockage of the highway for more than half a day.
Despite various attempts, Lateef Ahmed, district transport officer, Bathinda, was not available for comments.