Eminent Road Safety experts and activists attending the Two day National conference on Motor Vehicle Accident (MOVACON) have expressed grave concern at the increased number of road accident deaths in the country including the state of Gujarat , which recorded Seventh highest number of Road deaths during the year 2018 .
Currently, India accounts for around 12% to the global road traffic fatalities. The Indian roads witness over 500,000 road accidents each year resulting in about 147,000 fatalities which is also the leading cause of death among youth and children in the country.
As per figures for the year 2018 released by Union Ministry of Road and Transport (MoRTH) about 7176 road accident deaths and 17,467 injuries took place in 18,769 crashes in the state of Gujarat alone and it ranked 7th in the country. The state was only better than Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra.
More than 87% of the fatal accidents in the state of Gujarat were caused by speeding. The state ranked sixth in the country in the number of deaths in accidents caused by speeding. The state was only better than Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh in deaths due to accidents caused by speeding. In the number of accidents due to speeding, the ranked eighth in the country.
Data from “Road Accidents in India, 2018” released by the ministry of road transport and highways, revealed that the number of death due excessive speed of vehicles increased by more than 17% from 2017. In 2018, there were 6,988 deaths reported in 16,361 accidents caused by speeding, while the number was 5,948 deaths in 15,759 cases in 2017
Mr Ratan P Watal , Member secretary, Economic Advisory Committee to Prime Minister inaugurated the Two day national Conference, endorsed by the Economic Advisory Council to the Prime Minister (EAC-PM) being organised by the Lifeline Foundation (a Vadodara based Non-Government Organisation (NGO), that pioneered Highway Trauma Care in the country in close association with the International Road Federation (IRF) – India Chapter, the Society of Indian Automobile Association (SIAM) and the Gujarat Road Safety Authority.
Mr Ratan P Watal speaking on the occasion stressed on using technology for reduction of fatal road accidents and adhering to Four E of road safety including Engineering, Education, Enforcement and Emergency .
Mr L,P .Padalia , Commissioner, Gujarat Road Safety Authority speaking on the occasion said “ Gujarat has been able to reduce number of road accident deaths by 9.3 % in the year 2019 to 7330 from 7996 in the year 2018 as per provisional figures Updated recently . Now govt working on automation of vehicle fitness and Driving licence to further reducing accidents and removing black spots”
“About 250 Eminent road safety experts, non-profits, road builders, government functionaries, corporate CSR proponents, automobile experts, law enforcement agency, WHO representatives and trauma and emergency care proponents are attending the two day Conference to discuss road safety challenges in India, including the 4E’s the key drivers for road safety. The experts and delegates attending the conference will strive to learn from each other to formulate a collective strategy to bring about marked decrease in fatalities, injuries as also the number of road accidents in the country” said Padma Shri Dr Subroto Das co-founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Lifeline Foundation.
“The heavy penalties in the Motor Vehicles Amendment Bill – which acts as the primary traffic law enforcement tool worldwide, is an important measure towards strengthening the legal framework for improving road safety in India and the state of Gujarat The Gujarat government needs to be lauded as in its bid is trying to cut the road accident fatality through a new road safety policy that focuses on first response at the ‘golden hour’ (the first hour after the accident). Gujarat government has already announced Road Safety policy in the state with quick rescue of injured and administration of first aid is the principal focus of the policy.” Mr K K Kapila, President Emeritus, International Road Federation (IRF), a main speaker at the inaugural plenary session.
“A new guideline to ensure that best practices in road designing are followed by those involved in road construction is recommended for implementation. The Government also should have uniform design of all roads so that the number of accidents due to faulty designs can be minimized The Government should also ensure zero black spot policy for reduction in the road accidents.” added Mr K K Kapila,
Among eminent speakers at the Two day conference include Mr K Rajeswara Rao, Senior Advisor, Prof P K Sikdar, Advisor, International Road Federation, Mr Balraj Bhanot, Chairman, TEDC(BIS), , Karuna Raina of Savelife Foundation, Sanjay Randhar, Managing Director, Gujarat Venture Capital Finance Limited, Mr Ashish Chutani, Maruti Suzuki India Limited and Dr Tamorish Kole,