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Can we hope for safer roads

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EnvironmentTraffic

Not sure if people saw this today ("send drunk drivers ...") in the TOI. Here is another link (newstodaynet).

"Finally, there is a serious effort to discipline our traffic. The Law Commission has prepared a report on traffic discipline that sets down stringent penalties and exacting norms to straighten out India's notoriously indisciplined roads.

The Commission report has recommended a crackdown on drunken, rash and negligent driving by proposing that the maximum jail term for death caused by drunk or rash driving should be enhanced from two to 10 years. If the proposal is accepted, drunken or careless driving may become as much of a no-no in India as it is in the West."

I do hope they bring this in. Some history cases need to be made and publicised so that motorists think 10 times before they drink and drive or drive rashly. Even if nobody is killed a couple of nights in a lock-up with some unsavoury elements would bring down drunken driving

Equal importance must be given to road engineering, lack of signage (especially when road repairs/widening are on - NH7 before Hebbal flyover is a classic example).

 

Comments

narayan82's picture

Community Service?

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A lot of drunk driver get away with it, just because they don't kill. What I mean is Say Mr.X is above the alcohol limit does nothing wrong but is stopped and maybe fined, he continues to drink and drive as he is not yet accused of casuing any accident. Hence the enforcement must be for Anyone who is above the alcohol limit. Maybe it wont be right throwing them into Jails, but as in UK and other countries why not make them do Community Service? For E.g. 2 Major Driving Offences and the offendor has to work as a Traffic Assistant for 2 days or maybe pick garbage in cubbon park!
Narayan Gopalan
User Interaction Designer
Bangalore
silkboard's picture

Stats from Mysore highway and elsewhere

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If I remember right, some stats published about Bangalore Mysore highway 3 months ago said that number of accidents have had a close to 400% jump in 3 years after the highway was widened. (can't find a link, it was a TOI report, based on a survey and data gathered by Sudhir).

Simple reason for this would lack of commensurate investment in highway policing that should go with the widened highway and increased speed limits. Need a few highway interceptor vehicles, a few speed checking radar guns, few more cops who would use this new equipment and equipment for the new cops (radios, possibly weapons etc). Since I don't see any of above, and all that is visible is extra lanes, higher speeds and reckless drivers, I assume they just invested on the road and nothing much on policing.

Can't say the same for Bangalore in general, as we do see more traffic policemen  today than say 4 years ago. But I would still like to see stats like

  • Traffic police budget today vs 5 years ago
  • No of traffic cops per sq km of roa, today, 5 years ago
  • No of traffic cops per 1000 vehicles in Bangalore. this compared to other cities in India, and abroad.
  • Ratio of Number of recorded traffic violations (policing incidents) to number of vehicles on Bangalore roads - this stat today, and 5 years ago.
Stats like these will give us a better picture of policing situation in Bangalore. Things like just the number of recorded traffic violations, and number of Blackberries are misleading and uni-dimensional.
rs's picture

Why only drunk driving ?

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While drunk driving is certainly a problem there are plenty of completely sober people who drive terribly rashly and are a threat to all concerned. My worry is that something like stiff penalties for drunk drivers will be abused as at the moment the cops dont have scientific methods of testing - the `haa maadi' method employed by Bangalore's finest can hardly be considered objective. Stiff penalties will lead to lawsuits which will finally result in any such laws not being enforced. Frankly laws should be enforced - lane indiscipline, illegal parking and lack of any understanding of the rules of the road are rampant. What BBMP does not seem to realise that this is a massive cash cow waiting to be milked - which would end their concerns regarding lack of revenue.

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