‘Free left’ is being misused by many road users, writes S. Sundar

Watch out for trucks, autorickshaws, vans and motorbikes that could hit you while proceeding from Goripalayam signal to Albert Victor Bridge at Thevar statue junction.

For, the “free left” provided at the junction for vehicles coming from Panagal Road (Government Rajaji Hospital side) is being misused by many road users who cut through the traffic (from Tamukkam side) to reach the Sri Meenakshi Government College for Women Road to go to Sellur.

This happens every day despite two warning boards put up by the City Traffic Police on Panagal Road. The boards caution the road users against crossing the Goripalayam-Albert Victor Bridge Road to reach the college road. The free left allowed the vehicles only to take the Moongil Kadai Road in Azhwarpuram and the A.V.Bridge.

“The drivers are taking this perilous shortcut to save a circuitous route (an additional 200 metres of travel) through the Moongil Kadai Road to reach Sellur,” a traffic constable at Goripalayam said.

This results in vehicles coming dangerously close to one another. Often, vehicles screech to a halt, jump lanes or swerve sharply to avoid a collision.

“Not only trucks, even city buses proceeding towards Sholavandan, Karuppatti and Kachchakatti tend to make the dangerous crossing. Adding to the traffic chaos, the buses and mini-buses stop right at the beginning of the college road, blocking the free flow of traffic at the junction,” the constable added.

On top of that, vehicles from the Moongil Kadai Road make an unauthorised entry into the junction even as buses and other vehicles coming from Sellur via New Kalpalam Road try to enter A.V.Bridge.

The confluence of vehicles from four sides disrupts the traffic flow.

“We find vehicles hitting one another at this spot every day. But no one complains, everyone proceeds with their journey,” a constable observed. A Sub-Inspector of Police said it would be impossible to stop the vehicles from violating traffic rules at the busy junction.

Assistant Commissioner of Police (Traffic) S.Yellapparaj said the only way to end this problem was to withdraw the “free left” for vehicles coming from Panagal Road. “Vehicles from this road should be allowed only when there is a red signal for vehicles coming from Tamukkam,” he said.

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