SC panel asks Odisha to plug road safety gaps

first_imgA Supreme Court-appointed committee on road safety has observed that Odisha lacks road signage, markings and traffic signals conforming to the Indian Road Congress specifications.The committee headed by Justice K.S. Radhakrishnan made the observations based on a report of Institute of Road Traffic Education, which had conducted training on road safety for traffic police personnel deployed in Bhubaneswar, and for civil engineers on standard installation of traffic-control devices, types of road traffic violations and identification of black spots.Although the IRTE conducted the survey in Bhubaneswar, the committee wanted the Odisha government to “treat it as a sample study and implement the recommended actions throughout the State”.11% rise in fatalitiesThe committee’s observation becomes significant as there has been a rise of 11% in road accident fatalities in Odisha. According to State Road Safety Council, which met here earlier this week, 5,315 people were killed in road accidents in Odisha in 2018, 525 more than 2017 when 4,790 people lost their lives. The average growth in road accident fatalities in the country has been below 1% in this period.“A large percentage of road signage, road markings and traffic signals do not conform to IRC specifications,” the SC committee said in a letter to the State government.“Police personnel were not fully conversant in Motor Vehicles (Driving) Regulations, 2017. These regulations have been notified by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways on June 23, 2017, and have superseded the rules of the Road Regulations, 1989,” the letter addressed to the State Transport Secretary said.The committee recommended that all the road signage, markings and traffic signals should conform to the IRC specifications.“Traffic police, transport officers and road engineers should be imparted training in Motor Vehicle Acts, 1988, Central Motor Vehicles Rules 1989 and all the rules and regulations made thereunder,” it added. Enforcement of traffic laws by the State agencies should be as per the extant law and evidence, the committee emphasised.last_img

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