Police to acquire 10 more recovery vans to tow away vehicles hindering traffic flow

Obstructive parking on the city’s roads and footpaths has resulted in vehicles occupying almost an entire lane in arterial and side roads, stifling traffic movement.

Still, agencies that enjoy ample executive powers like the Regional Transport Authority (RTA) and the district-level Road Safety Committee (RSC) seem to be in no mood to act.

“Apart from causing traffic snarls, chaotic parking often leads to brawls between motorists, sometimes posing law and order issues,” a traffic police official said. With Police, Motor Vehicles Department, district administration and civic agencies — all represented in RTA and RSC — often turning a blind eye to haphazard parking of vehicles, unscrupulous drivers consider it their right to park their vehicles almost everywhere on thoroughfares. Rajasekharan S., a city resident expressed annoyance at how cars and other vehicles are often parked on the tarred portion of roads, forcing motorists to take a detour through potholed portions. Ernakulam Range IG, K. Padmakumar spoke of how parking problems can be overcome if commercial buildings, apartments and houses have parking space for owners, customers and guests. “Civic agencies like the corporation have a key role in enforcing this mandatory norm while issuing building permits.” However, this remains only on paper now. In places like Container Road, huge container trucks are parked on roads, hampering the free flow of vehicles and posing the risk of accidents.

Mr Padmakumar called for establishing more pay and park lots in the city and suburbs, especially since more parking curbs would be in place in connection with Kochi Metro works. “Alternatives to road-side parking must be probed and implemented. On the enforcement front, Kochi’s traffic police will soon get 10 more recovery vans to tow away vehicles that obstruct traffic flow,” he said.

Reacting to a suggestion to regulate parking on select roads by permitting parking on one side on odd-number days and on the other on even number days of each month, Assistant Commissioner of City Traffic Police K.S. Baby Vinod said that this would need the RTA’s concurrence.

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