Minister’s son who died recently was riding without headgear too

A software engineer and an engineering graduate died in a road accident on Flag Staff Road on Saturday night after the two-wheeler they were travelling on hit a van coming from the opposite side. Police said the duo was not wearing helmets.

According to police, Jayaraman (21), a software engineer and his friend Jeevabharati (21) who just completed engineering were Vyasarpadi residents.

On Saturday, Jayaraman was riding the bike and the two were headed towards Royapettah. They reached Flag Staff Road around 8.10 p.m when a van coming from the opposite direction rammed the two-wheeler. Both Jayaraman and Jeevabharati fell on the road and sustained head injuries. They died on the spot.

The van driver Natarajan (50) was headed to War Memorial and lost control as he was speeding, said Rajasekaran, Elephant Gate traffic investigation inspector. He was arrested. “The bikers could have escaped with injuries had they worn helmets,” said Mr. Rajasekaran.

According to police, 25 per cent of all fatal accidents that occur in the city involve two-wheelers, and in 96 per cent of the cases, the rider is helmet-less. “The sad part is that even educated youngsters fail to understand the importance of wearing the helmet,” said a police officer.

Last month, Tamizh Mani, son of Co-operation Minister Sellur. K. Raju, died in a road accident. He was not wearing a helmet at the time.

Though Chennai Traffic Police has fined over three lakh motorists for helmet-less travel till date, they are often found flouting the rule. “One should think of the agony caused to family members, before breaking the rule,” said Sivanantham, deputy commissioner of police, traffic planning.

He said Chennai Traffic Police were roping in school children to spread awareness. “People tend to heed little children’s words,” he said.

Meanwhile, early on Sunday, an unidentified man was run over by a vehicle at Anna Salai-Pallavan Salai junction. Police said the pavement dweller was crossing the road when the accident happened.