City roads turn death traps
More than 250 people have lost their lives in road accidents in Ludhiana since January 2011. And yet the authorities at the district transport office (DTO) and the traffic wing of the police department seem to be indifferent towards the issue.punjab Updated: Mar 30, 2012 11:34 IST
More than 250 people have lost their lives in road accidents in Ludhiana since January 2011. And yet the authorities at the district transport office (DTO) and the traffic wing of the police department seem to be indifferent towards the issue.
Punjab was ranked second on the accident fatality scale in a recent survey by the National Crime Report Bureau (NCRB).
However, what is more alarming is that Ludhiana has been ranked number one in road accident deaths in Punjab, while it has the dubious distinction 17th position in the national list of accident fatality rate.
The reason behind the situation is the lack of implementation of the traffic regulations.
In clear violation of the Supreme Court notification issued in October 2010, wherein “speed governors” were made mandatory for all college/school buses, the DTO and the traffic police have failed to check the flouting of the norm by the bus drivers and owners in the city.
“Hundreds of lives are lost every year on the city roads but the administration fails to take notice of the violations,” said Dr Kamaljit Soi, the vice-president of the Punjab State Road Safety Council (PSRSC).
“It was due to the absence of a speed governor in the over-speeding college bus that 23-year-old Avneet Kaur, a student of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), was killed recently after being hit by the bus. This amounts to contempt of the Punjab and Haryana high court and the officials found negligent, mainly the MVI (motor vehicle inspector) and the DTOs (district transport officers) should be prosecuted.”
Dr Soi added that enforcement system to control speeding needed to be strengthened. Introduction of traffic-calming measures like rumble strips/speed breakers, fitting speed governors in school/college buses and heavy motor vehicles, installation of speed cameras at accident-prone locations and other speed management measures should be taken in order to control speeding effectively, he added.
“A public awareness campaign regarding the risks of speeding has to be carried,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Ludhiana municipal corporation is sleeping over the issue of putting up boards displaying the speed limit on specific roads.
Deputy commissioner Rahul Tewari had categorically asked the LMC authorities in a meeting convened in 2011 to do the needful, but to no avail.
None of the city roads have a single board showing approved the speed limit.