There was no decline in the number of fatal road mishaps in Rewari district in 2018 though the authorities concerned had organised several awareness programmes to make people aware about road safety. As many as 292 persons died in 263 accidents in the district last year.
Sources say around 40 per cent of the mishaps occurred on the Delhi-Jaipur National Highway due to lack of entry and exit points, incomplete service lanes and no arrangement of lights at some accident-prone spots. As many as 14 persons lost their lives in 13 accidents on the highway in December alone last year.
Mohit Yadav, Road Safety Associate (RSA) with Haryana Vision Zero Programme based on Road Safety, has apprised the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) about the main causes of the accidents but nothing is being done to address them.
“Absence of entry and exit points is the major reason for road accidents not only on the Delhi-Jaipur highway but also on the Rewari-Rohtak highway. Signboards have not been installed at several points while no arrangement of lights has been made at Banipur crossroads, leading to accidents during night. Even potholes have developed on the highway at numerous places but the NHAI is paying no attention towards it,” says Mohit.
He says there is a dire need to take serious steps to curb road accidents on crossroads. “The number of road mishaps can be brought down at least by up to 15 per cent by making proper arrangements of lights, installing an adequate numbers of signboards and constructing entry and exit points on the highways,” says Mohit. Two-wheeler riders and pedestrians are the victims in a majority of accidents on the highways.
Mohit claims that at least a 10 per cent increase in the number of mishaps was witnessed in Rewari district before 2016 but road safety awareness programmes succeeded in checking the rising graph. “As many as 267 fatal accidents were reported in the district in 2016 while the number was 263 each in 2017 and 2018,” adds Yadav.
Vijay Kumar, a social activist, says overloading of vehicles was a major reason for road accidents in the district over a year ago but the authorities concerned took strict measures to check the violation.
“A penalty of Rs 5.5 crore has been imposed on over 1,000 commercial vehicles in the district during the past four months for overloading and evading tax. Deputy Commissioner Ashok Sharma has approved Rs 24.72 lakh for installing safety devices, solar studs, cat-eye reflectors and blinkers on various accident-prone points in the district,” says Pradeep Dahiya, ADC-cum-Secretary, Regional Transport Authority (RTA), Rewari.
Dahiya adds various teams of the district RTA continuously inspect accident-prone points to identify the main reasons and suggest solutions. The work to put up cat-eye reflectors at the Ramgarh Chowk is under way while other safety equipment will be installed at Maharana Pratap Chowk, Hooda Chowk, Ambedkar Chowk, Naayiwali Chowk and Rao Gopal Dev Chowk, besides on Narnaul, Mahendragarh and Garhi Bolni roads, he adds.