‘Forgiving roads to make Bundelkhand expressway India’s safest highway’
Bundelkhand Expressway, one of the most ambitious projects of Uttar Pradesh government, is all set to get operational by the end of the current year. The 296-km long highway is billed to be the safest four-lane expressway in the country as it is based on Forgiving Roads (FR), a concept aimed at avoiding or minimising the harm and consequences of traffic accidents.
FR envisages a road design that seeks to smoothly redirect motorists who go off the highways out of confusion over the exit ways.
The four-lane access-controlled expressway is being built by Uttar Pradesh Expressways Industrial Development Authority (UPEIDA). Four private infrastructure majors, Apco Infratech, Ashoka Buildcon, Gawar Construction and Dilip Buildcon are executing the project. The Intercontinental Consultants and Technocrats (ICT), a leading global consultancy organization, is the Authority Engineer for the supervision of the expressway.
“Most desirable design standards have been adopted to make it the safest expressway,” said KK Kapila, chairman of Intercontinental Consultants.
The 5Es of safe road operations, he said, such as road engineering, vehicular engineering, education, enforcement and emergency care would be fully catered. “The expressway will have latest crash barriers, design of at-grade and grade separated junctions, appropriate traffic signage, road markings,” he said. Several protections would be given for vehicular engineering. Old heavy vehicles would be retrofitted, and reflective tapes would be put on heavy vehicles, tractor-trollies.
While policemen would be trained in accident data collection, first aid trauma care and Good Samaritan law, Automated Traffic Management System (ATMS) for safe operation of traffic and monitoring incident management are also being introduced. In education, effort would be to inculcate good road behaviour through awareness campaigns in schools and introduce road safety curriculum in the existing textbooks. “We will be targeting schools in the two-kilometer vicinity of the expressway. The textbooks with road safety curriculum for classes VI to X have already been provided to the state government for necessary adoption by the schools,” he said. As for emergency care, the roadside community, including eateries, small repair shops, fuel stations would be trained on First Aid Pre-hospital trauma care to assist the accident victims within the golden hour.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone for the highway in February last year.