Unprotected roads pose threat to motorists

Lack of sidewalls on roads along the canals pose a threat to heavy vehicles like school buses.— Photo: H.Vibhu.

Lack of sidewalls on roads along the canals pose a threat to heavy vehicles like school buses.— Photo: H.Vibhu.  

: Danger lurks on unprotected roads across Ernakulam four days after the Kothamangalam tree fall tragedy that claimed the lives of five schoolchildren.

Accident black spots seem posing a big threat, especially to school buses and private vehicles that transport thousands of children daily to various schools in the district. Unprotected roads along the canals, ponds and rivers have turned a nightmare for the school authorities and vehicle drivers.

“It’s another tragedy in the waiting unless we wake up and act. We have come across reports of unprotected roads along the canals in Ernakulam. Lack of proper protective wall of railing on either sides of culverts are a big threat to school children,” said T.P.M. Ibrahim Khan, president of the Kerala CBSE School Management Association.

School bus drivers admitted that a tragedy could happen at any moment while negotiating the dangerous curves and unprotected roads in Ernakulam.

“The unprotected roads along the Perandoor canal that separates Girinagar and Panampilly Nagar are a driver’s nemesis. The situation is no different for school vehicles coming from the Pullepady bridge and taking the canal road to reach Kaloor,” said V.R. Sudheer, District Secretary, Ernakulam District School Trip Drivers Union. The enforcement agencies have also sounded the alarm bell. Fire Divisional Officer R. Prasad said that the lack of side walls along the canals and fragile railings on the sides of culverts pose a major threat to the public.

“Unscientific construction of protective walls and absence of sign boards along such stretches had also resulted in accidents at various spots in the district and nearby areas,” he said.

Ernakulam Regional Transport Officer K.M. Shaji, too, said his department had received reports about unprotected roads along the canals. The Parvathy Puthanar canal in Thiruvananthapuram had turned in to a watery grave twice in 2011 after six schoolchildren and a caretaker and three children got killed in separate incidents after the vehicles carrying them plunged in to the waters.

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Printable version | Apr 7, 2020 3:26:25 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/unprotected-roads-pose-threat-to-motorists/article7373095.ece

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