Need for re-designing was necessitated following the death of minister Sellur K. Raju’s son in a motorcycle accident in 2012

That screeching, scratching noise that makes you cringe as you take your sedan slowly over the speed-breaker? That’s the sound you cannot avoid, however hard you try, because the speed-breaker is steep.

It is time for motorists in the city to be free of back-breaking speed-breakers. The numerous badly-designed and marked speed-breakers are being replaced with structures that conform to the specifications of the Indian Roads Congress (IRC).

The Chennai Corporation has begun work on new speed-breakers inside residential localities. Existing ones that do not conform to IRC specifications are also being changed.

A senior official in Adyar zone said around 40 speed-breakers have been identified in the zone covering Velachery, Guindy, Saidapet, Besant Nagar, Thiruvanmiyur and Adyar.

The need for re-designing the speed-breakers was necessitated following the death of minister Sellur K. Raju’s son in a motorcycle accident in June 2012. The young man had hit a speed-breaker on NSC Bose Road, resulting in the accident.

A model of a speed-breaker as per IRC specifications was designed within a week of the accident, but the work on re-modification began only a month ago.

The official said each new concrete speed-breaker, with a smooth curved shape and painted for easy identification, costs between Rs. 20,000 and Rs. 25,000. Previously, road contractors would install speed-breakers by dumping macadam on the road and leave them without paint marking, he said.

Zone-wise, there are a total of 780 speed-breakers in 15 zones, of which 420 comply with IRC standards. The rest are planned to be modified in phases.

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You stay ‘Stop’ and the buses stop right where you want. At least, the small buses and airconditioned buses operated by the Metropolitan Transport Corporation (MTC) do.

After share autorickshaws began eating into MTC’s revenue, at least a decade ago, the transport corporation has finally woken from its slumber and become friendlier towards passengers.

Realising this is an era of modes of transport that serve passengers right from their doorsteps, MTC has decided to pull up its socks.

The small buses recently rolled out by MTC are nearly within the control of the passenger. “We stop by the roadside when commuters signal us and allow them to get in. Unlike regular buses, there is no bus-stop concept when it comes to small buses,” said an MTC official.

This has made the service a hit among passengers in many interior parts of the suburbs where regular buses are rare and autorickshaws fleece people.

“We do not have to walk to the bus stop and wait in the heat. The small buses stop right at our doorstep,” said M.K. Sargunam, a resident of Saraswathy Nagar in Chitlapakkam.

Taking a cue, MTC’s airconditioned (AC) buses too have started halting wherever passengers wish to alight or board. “Unless we do this, we cannot increase our revenue. For us, the passenger is the king,” said the conductor of an AC bus.

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