Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways C.P. Joshi on Thursday ordered, as a first step towards the proper designing of roads, a survey to identify factors causing accidents.
Addressing a workshop on the importance of safety in the design of road projects, Dr. Joshi said that it was imperative to first conduct a survey to determine the causes behind the high rate of accidents in the country. He regretted that the designs were not based on scientific information.
Dr. Joshi said that available statistics did not indicate if fatalities were higher on the rural and State roads or on national highways.
He wondered why no study had been conducted into the behaviour of drivers, the problem of overloading and whether these were the outcome of poor education, training and awareness.
He directed the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) and the Indian Roads Congress to design roads on the basis of a region-specific survey.
Geographical and environmental conditions, he said, had to be taken into consideration in design. He was particular about protecting water bodies as their destruction caused immense hardship to the locals.