Road Accidents in India

Horizontal view of accident on pedestrian crossing
Horizontal view of accident on pedestrian crossing

In 2013, India witnessed over 137,000 deaths in road accidents alone while in 2014 around 75,000 people aged between 15 and 34 years succumbed to the accidents. According to the Road Accident Report for 2014 prepared by the Road, Transport and Highways ministry, 82% of the victims were male. In India, about 20 children die in road accidents everyday. These figures can send chills down the spine of any person.

The leading causes of road accidents in India are speeding, overloading, and drunk driving. Among these accidents there are also Hit and Run case which usually are the ones catching attention of media. In recent times, Mercedes Hit and Run case of Delhi has been one of the most discussed one on both social media as well as mainstream media. In this case a 17 year old boy, was over-speeding his Mercedes which led to the death of Siddharth Sharma, a marketing executive in Delhi. The CCTV footage of this incident has been widely shared and has raised curiosity among people. The curiosity as such is more towards the trial of the accused and not towards the root cause.

Speeding is the biggest cause of road accidents. There is a saying “ Better late than never” which is a very prudent one. With the roads full of pits and potholes speeding is never a good idea in India. Add to this, the million cars plying on the narrow Indian roads. With the rise in the living standard of Indians, more people are now opting for high end luxury cars but the roads and traffic are not suitable for these cars. Another issue is drunk driving. No matter what one should do always keep certain things in mind because life is very precious. Our mistakes do not end up only hurting us and our family members but also someone who was not at fault at all. Imagine a person returning home from office and walking calmly on pavement. Suddenly, a car driven by someone who is drunk hits him on footpath and kills him. Although this is not a pre planned or intentional murder but a person died for no fault of his while the guilty will continue to live. Imagine being fined or punished for no fault of yours! We all would fret over it. Now, consider the plight of the person who has been punished fatally for no fault of his. More so his family, which is dependent on him has also been punished for a lifetime. The high of the booze leads to the low of a lifetime for that family.

Overloading is another major issue. It does not include overloaded trucks only but also two wheelers. Watching an entire 4 member family on a 2 wheeler scooter is a common sight in India. This is a very dangerous act and many parents don’t realise the costs which they might have to pay for pursuing the same. Add to this, the scant respect for law which includes wearing helmet by the driver as well as the pillion rider, not driving in wrong lane, breaking signal, over taking, driving without a license among others. The traffic police department which is there to ensure that law is followed is understaffed and thus policemen are overburdened. This all has to change, else mindless deaths will continue. 

Laws need to be followed for reducing the number of accidents. After all they have been made for our safety. There needs to be an attitude change in the society. Those who already follow laws need to step ahead and persuade others because accidents are such that they do not necessarily punish the one who commits the mistake. If you see anyone violating traffic rule, talk to him politely and ask him to refrain from such activities in future. It does have an impact. After all most people are good at heart. All they need is a little push to invoke that goodness and sense of responsibility.

Lets spread awareness, SWIPE out (download the app https://goo.gl/oIXioK) the unreasonable arguments given by people who break these laws because tomorrow it could be anybody; you, me, our family and friends who might be the next victim to these mindless acts.

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