Kerala

Kerala well on road safety target

Kerala is well within the target of 10% annual reduction in road deaths set by the Supreme Court Committee on Road Safety if the statistics on accidents and fatalities on its roads for the five months from November 2019 to March 2020 is any indication.

The statistics has been submitted to the committee.

Road accidents and fatalities in the State came down by 2.2% and 15.2% respectively during the five months from November 2019 to March 2020 because of stern enforcement of law.

The number of road accidents during the period came down from 18,010 in 2019 to 17,605 in 2020, a decrease of 2.2%.

The number of fatalities dipped from 2,050 to 1,738, a fall of 15.2%.

The Motor Vehicles Department’s Safe Kerala project for strict enforcement of road discipline and the steep increase in penalty for offences, effected by an amendment to the Motor Vehicles Act, 2019, led to the dip, N. Shanker Reddy, Road Safety Commissioner, Kerala Road Safety Authority (KRSA), told The Hindu.

Use of headgear

A noticeable change is the 85% compliance with the rules for use of headgear and seat belt by motorists and 50% use of headgear by pillion riders, says KRSA executive director T. Elangovan.

In absolute terms, 66 lives were saved in January, 25 in February, and 124 in March, compared to the figures of the same period in 2019.

A reduction of 215 road fatalities was reported during the first three months of 2020 as compared to the same period in 2019. On an average, the first quarter of 2020 saw 17% reduction in road fatalities and 3.9% in accidents.

During the 68 days of the COVID-19-induced lockdown from March 25 to May 31, there was a considerable decrease in road accidents, fatalities, and injuries. During this time, 193 deaths and 1,686 injuries were reported in 1,592 accidents compared to 926 deaths and 8,679 injuries in 7,703 accidents recorded in the corresponding period last year. Altogether, there is a decrease of 6,111 accidents, thereby saving 733 lives and hospitalisation of 7,023 injured persons.

“The reduction in accident severity was helpful in sparing the medical facilities and health personnel for fighting COVID-19. This, in turn, resulted in savings to the GDP, especially during the pandemic. When many sectors suffered owing to the lockdown, road safety helped save the lives of citizens,” Mr. Elangovan said.

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Printable version | Aug 8, 2020 2:11:50 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/state-well-on-road-safety-target/article31927028.ece

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