Simple measures like switching your parking lights on could have averted tragedy

If the lorry had had parking lights, the Tata Aria would probably not have rammed the vehicle and five precious lives would have been saved. The incident, which took place on Friday, was one among the many that could have been avoided had simple precautions been taken.

The lorry laden with sand was not more than a year old and had functional parking lights. The driver, who fled the spot after the accident, stopped it on the first lane to the left and got off to answer nature’s call.

“Within few minutes, the Multi-Purpose Vehicle came from behind and crashed into the lorry. The absconding driver told the lorry owner over phone that he panicked and ran away,” Pahadi Shareef Inspector J. Bhaskar Reddy said. On reaching the spot, police found that the lorry’s parking lights were not switched on.

This is not the first instance of stationary vehicles turning out dangerous on the ORR and elsewhere. Four persons, including three of a family, died when the DCM van they were travelling in hit a van parked on the ORR at Vattinagulapally of Raidurg three months ago. The van was parked on the ORR so that one of its punctured tyres may be repaired.

Both accidents occurred in the early hours of the day. The use of parking lights in the dark would have alerted drivers of other vehicles, investigators felt.

“Small precautions like using parking lights and parking vehicles at the space earmarked for them would save lots of lives. Unfortunately, even educated persons are ignoring these measures, contributing to fatal accidents. Using parking lights is a must when the vehicle is stopped,” said police officials. Though higher-ups in the Cyberabad Police Commissionerate spoke of strict action against those stopping vehicles on the ORR, there is no specific provision in the law to award serious punishment for not complying with usage of parking lights.

“All that police can do is invoking rules of the Motor Vehicle Act for not putting on the parking lights. At the most, the vehicle driver would be imposed some fine amount,” a retired police officer remarked.

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