They will be part of a police initiative to promote safe driving

Parents of accident victims will join hands with the police to persuade young two-wheeler riders to wear helmets, observe traffic rules, and drive responsibly.

The bereaved parents, along with film stars, youth icons and law enforcers, will attend traffic safety awareness meetings at schools and colleges in the city from June 15.

The parents hope to make an emotional appeal to the youth by sharing their pain with them. The police initiative comes in the wake of the death of two young motorbike riders at Kowdiar on Saturday.

Several youngsters, who have lost their limbs in accidents involving two-wheelers, will participate in the meetings with their family members and share their experience. The police will screen short films on responsible driving.

According to the police, 44 people were killed and over 600 seriously injured in accidents in the city in the past six months. A majority of the accident victims were two-wheeler riders and head injury was the main cause of the deaths. Most of the casualties would have had a better chance of survival if they had worn helmets. Drunk driving, speeding, and violation of lane discipline were the main causes of the accidents.

Commissioner of Police Manoj Abraham said film actors Suresh Gopi and Dileep had agreed to support the initiative. The police would also rope in FM radio stations to support the campaign.

The police would place three dimensional images that convey road safety messages near traffic signal lights and pedestrian crossings. Student police cadets would issue small traffic advisory slips to motorists, requesting them to drive with their seat belts fastened and shun the use of mobile phones while driving.

Film actors and law enforcers would visit morning walk circuits at Museum, Shanghumughom, and Kanakakkunnu Palace and hand out pamphlets urging pedestrians to walk on the road only on their right hand side and cross carriageways where zebra lines are marked.

The police have sought the help of the Revenue and the Thiruvananthapuram city Corporation authorities to clear all footpaths of illegal encroachments. They said they would crack down on parking of vehicles on newly paved footpaths, and prevent wayside eateries, as is the case at the busy Vellayambalam junction, from operating on dedicated pedestrian pathways.

The awareness campaign would be followed up with a sustained and intense night-time enforcement against drunk driving and speeding. The police would be equipped with handheld breath analysers to quickly detect the blood alcohol content of drivers.