The World Bank has approved a grant of ₹51 crore to set up an integrated road safety enforcement system in Shimla and Nurpur police districts and develop the Palampur-Sheela chowk in Kangra as a "safe corridor", officials said here.
The project envisages the establishment of a traffic enforcement control room in Shimla and the allocation of funds for interceptors and patrol vehicles, an intelligent traffic management system, artificial intelligence (AI) cameras and rescue equipment, they said.
For the first phase of the project, Shimla and Nurpur have been selected and a sum of ₹42 crore will be spent on the twin police districts to strengthen their emergency response systems, Director General of Police (DGP) Sanjay Kundu told PTI.
The number of accidents in Himachal Pradesh has come down from 3,114 in 2017 to about 2,600 in 2022, he said, adding, "We have worked very hard to reduce road accidents in Himachal, and emerged as a role model not only for hill states but all over the world." The DGP added that the World Bank has approved a grant of ₹51 crore for the project, which is in its procurement stage.
Superintendent of Police, Traffic, Sandeep Dhawal said 120 locations have been identified in Shimla district for installation of AI-powered cameras. These include Theog, Rampur, Rohru, Kumarsain, Kotkhai, Nerva, Jubbal, Chopal and Sunni, besides the capital city, he said.
An analysis of crash data of all districts over the past few years, site visits and surveys of existing resources, identification of black spots and accident-prone stretches among others showed that Shimla, Mandi and Kangra districts are the most accident-prone districts, police said.
In Himachal Pradesh, the highest number of over 1,170 fatalities in about 2,600 road accidents was reported in Shimla district in the period from 2017 to 2022, they said.
Further, the Palampur-Sheela chowk stretch of road in Kangra district has been chosen to be developed as a safe corridor under the Safe Corridor Demonstration Programme (SCDP) by making safety interventions and design improvements at a cost of ₹9 crore, police added.