Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways Nitin Gadkari has called for all-round efforts by all stakeholders to ensure that deaths due to road accidents are reduced by 50 per cent by 2025.
Inaugurating a Webinar Series titled ‘Road safety challenges in India and Preparation of an Action plan’, he said, “The road safety Institutes like International Road Federation (IRF) along with engineering colleges and IITs can help the government in road safety audits.”
The Union Minister added: “Each engineering college can be given about 300-500 Km of road stretch for road safety audit with some financial aid. Third party road safety audits will help in finding engineering faults and correcting them.”
Terming the situation as alarming, the Minister said we stand at number one position in road accidents in the world, ahead of US and China.
The webinar series was organised by the India chapter of the International road Federation (IRF), a global body working for better and safer roads worldwide.
As per estimates, some 1.5 lakh people die, and more than 4.5 lakh people are injured in road accidents every year in the country – 415 deaths per day in road accidents. 3.14 per cent of national GDP is the socio-economic loss from these accidents, and 70 per cent of the deaths are in the age group of 18 to 45 years old.
The Minister said further: “Similarly the Detailed Project Reports (DPR) are major cause for road accidents and most of road accidents happen at Traffic junctions mainly due to fauilty DPR prepaired by the various agencies .DPR prepairing people are responsible for road accidents in the country. The engineering colleges and various road safety bodies can help by studying the DPR and recrifying faults in it.”
He said that the transport ministry has undertaken number of initiatives to bring down the number of accidents and deaths.
Listing out the steps, the Union said these include a project to rectify black spots, improving road engineering, use of innovative technology to reduce accidents, removal of encroachments on highways, removal of trees obstructing roads, rectifying defective speed breakers, making airbags mandatory in economy cars, and use of ABS brakes and automatic headlight system in two-wheelers.
(With inputs from Automotive Lead Research Team)
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