Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has directed all states to have 10 per cent of the total fleet of buses to be equipped with disabled friendly features to provide people with physical and visual disabilities easier access.

“Majority of people with disabilities are mostly apprehensive of using public transport as presently state owned and private buses are not equipped do not meet the requirement of people with special needs. State transport authorities have been asked to acquire and equip buses designed to enable people with disabilities to board and disembark without having to assisted.” said Mr Abhay Damle, Joint secretary, Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) while inaugurating a conference on ‘Safe road-safe life’ organised by ASSOCHAM, the apex trade body of industrialists here today.

“Ministry has also issued advisory to State transport departments to issue driving Licenses to physically disabled clearing all normal driving tests and formalities. A person without both the hands has been issued a driving license in Indore recently. More over the state transport and Motor Vehicle registration authorities in the country have been asked to immediately register vehicles modified by the disabled without and certificate from the vehicle manufcatu4er “said Mr Damle.

“Regarding motor vehicle safety Indian cars presently being manufactured are quiet safe, more stress should be given on Two wheeler safety by vehicle manufacturers as 80% of the vehicles in the country are Two wheelers. Government on its part has already made ABS and CBS and now ‘Automatic Headlamp On’ (AHO) mandatory in two-wheelers from 2017. Two wheel manufacturers should work on more safety features including stability “said Mr Damle.

“India is signatory to UN Decade of Action for reducing fatal road accidents by 50 % by the year 2020 , but road accident deaths are on the rise with 1.46 lakh road deaths due to accidents during the year 2015 . As most of the road accidents in India happen due to human error or road engineering defects, its high time the concept of “Forgiving Highways and roads ,” should come to India. The design and construction of roads should be such that any mistake in the man-machine system is taken care of by the road.” said MR K K Kapila, Chairman, International Road Federation (IRF) , a Geneva based global body working for better and safer roads world wide while delivering his key note speech.

“Simultaneously, enforcement of traffic disciplines for vehicles and non-motorised traffic by the agencies concerned is of paramount importance. The trauma care service to provide post accident trauma care to the road accident victims with a view to reducing fatalities is an essential component in road accident management. This will help in reducing fatal road accident deaths” He added.