20% decline in fatal road crashes in last 2 years: Study

Staff ReporterUpdated: Wednesday, May 29, 2019, 08:25 AM IST
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Mumbai: A Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety Study conducted with the Mumbai Traffic Police has found that road deaths have been on a decline since 2015, which recorded the highest number.

Official data reveals that there has been a 20 per cent decline in fatal road accidents in the last two years. “Road deaths have been on a decline since 2015, which has recorded the highest number of 611 people killed. In comparison, the record for 2017 shows 490 people being killed in road accidents. This indicates there has been a 20 per cent decrease in fatal accidents in the last two years,” the data reveals.

The official said the ‘proactive identification and management of black spots, effective enforcement of wearing helmets, prevention of speeding and drink driving, coupled with engineering solutions have led to a reduction in fatal road accidents in the last two years.

There still is a black spot. This study finds that Eastern Express Highway (EEH) is a ‘high risk area’ in the city. Pedestrians and motorcyclists have been identified as most vulnerable road users. As per this study, in 2017, ‘elderly people are at the highest risk when walking on roads.’

Among 490 fatalities last year, 52 per cent pedestrians and 38 per cent motorcyclists, including 14 per cent pillion riders died in road accidents.“Earlier, motorcyclists and pillion riders were not serious about wearing helmets. However, with increased surprise checks, as well as issuance of e-challans and campaigns on social media have encouraged motorcyclists to wear helmets. It has been proven that the wrong method of wearing helmets contributes to fatal road crashes and injuries,” said a traffic police officer.

There has been an increase in helmet use from 68 per cent in 2015 to 92 per cent in 2018. But the sore point is, only 43 per cent pillion riders strap the helmets correctly. “Although wearing helmets properly has been made mandatory as per the Motor Vehicles Act, only one per cent of pillion riders wear helmets in the first place. Worse still, fewer than one per cent of them strap the helmets properly. The rate of riders and pillions wearing helmets properly has increased from 24 per cent in 2015 to 34 per cent in late 2017,” according to the study.

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