Lucknow’s roads have become deadlier
JULY 15: Six school children were injured when the van in which they were travelling was hit by a Roadways bus on Lohia Path. The van was plying on the wrong side of the road.
JULY 21: A bike-borne lawyer died after he rammed into a pillar of an overbridge near the Mithaiwala crossing in Gomti Nagar. The mishap occurred when he was hit by a car moving on the wrong side of the road.
In both the cases, wrong-way driving could not be checked as traffic cops were not present on the spot. Fatalities in road mishaps are on the rise, said road safety experts.
In the last three years, Lucknow saw 1,306 road accidents that claimed 150 lives. These incidents occurred at 21 spots, which were already under state government’s scanner as accident-prone zones, said road safety experts.
“Lucknow’s roads have become deadlier because of faulty engineering and lack of traffic discipline among commuters,” said Ashutosh Soti, president of Shubham Soti Foundation, working for road safety.
“Deployment of traffic cops, installation of traffic lights and improvement in road design are required to minimise the number of accidents,” he emphasised.
A few crossings, which saw accidents regularly, had been identified by experts.
In last three years, 145 accidents on Utrethia bridge turn near Shaheed Path claimed 12 lives.
This place was categorised as ‘sensitive’, but authorities didn’t do much to improve things here.
In the same period, nine people died in 108 accidents on Rae Bareli road near Telibagh railway bridge.
Another spot where accidents occurred due to faulty road design was the Nadarganj trisection. Eleven people lost their lives in 102 accidents here.
Commuters said the Samtamoolak crossing was a ‘vicious circle of traffic’ where vehicles came from six sides and cops were missing from the spot.
A similar situation prevailed at the crossing near Loreto Convent. Traffic cops were usually seen on the side of the road rather than being in the middle to regulate traffic.
The Avadh Rotary in Alambagh, Munshipulia, Tehripulia and Engineering college crossings were also accident-prone, said road safety activists.
“Overtaking, wrong-way/rash driving and lack of speed breakers near the crossings lead to mishaps,” said Arvind Kumar Pandey, additional transport commissioner. He said measures were being taken to lay speed breakers and have more one-way roads.
SK Jain, an expert on road safety, said, “There is a simple solution to check accidents at Lohia Path, 1090 crossing and Samtamoolak crossing – cops must ensure that motorists follow traffic signals and no vehicle plies in the wrong lane.”
Similarly, cops at Loreto crossing must be present in the middle of the road to control traffic, he added.
“The state government has been holding meetings at the highest level to deal with the issue of ‘black spots’ in UP. A road safety committee comprising members from 10 departments is working towards setting things right,”
said Raj Shekhar, transport commissioner.
He added: “The responsibility of dealing with ‘black spots’ primarily rests with the National Highways Authority of India and the Public Works Department. It also rests with the LDA and LMC, depending upon the road, whether it is a national highway, state highway or municipal road.”
However, PWD officials said measures had been taken to prevent road accidents.
These included laying speed breakers, installing traffic signage, traffic lights, street lights, widening roads, deploying traffic cops etc.