Road accidents alone killed 150,785 people across India in 2016, which is an increase of 3.3 percent from 2015 when 146,000 lakh road fatalities were recorded, highlighted a Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) report. This translates the fact that nearly 400 fatalities a day were reported in 2016. This figure stands far higher than developed auto markets like the United States where around 40,000 causalities were registered in 2016.
While most of the road users are aware about the general traffic rules and safety measures, the laxity on their part causes accidents and collisions. Human errors like over speeding, drunken driving, distractions to driver, red light jumping, avoiding safety gear (seatbelts and helmets), non-adherence to lane driving and overtaking are considered to be the main causes of accidents and crashes in India.
This carnage on Indian roads is neither new nor the Government of India is ignorant of this. Over the years, road safety has become one of the most pressing issues that modern India faces today. And, the Modi-led government is trying hard to check this menace. India has taken up the challenge of reducing road accident fatalities by 50 percent in the next two years. This is a commitment India made by adopting the Brasilia Declaration for Road Safety.
On its way to achieve this, the government plans to amend the currently applicable Motor Vehicles Act 1988. Despite getting a go-ahead from Lok Sabha, the Motor Vehicles (Amendment) Bill, which is currently with the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Transport, Culture, and Tourism, is pending for long in the Rajya Sabha. Also, the present draft is not what the government had initially intended to create.
For the uninitiated, the bill addresses road safety issues by providing provisions for stricter penalties for traffic offences, permitting electronic and IT-enabled enforcement, improving fitness certification and licensing regime, and making statutory provision for the protection of good Samaritans.
Besides bringing strict laws, the government needs to give a makeover to Indian roads in order to improve the user experience. With over 20 years of experience, Metro Infrasys has been offering a myriad of solutions to make roads safe and secure. And, the below-mentioned solutions are what Indian rods and highways require to shed its stained image and get better.
- Designed to improve road safety, roadside emergency phones, also known as emergency call boxes (ECBs), are pillared on either side of the road in order to ensure the fast and improved response in emergency situations. These devices use communication networks based either on optical fiber cables (OFC) or global system for mobile (GSM).
- A variable message sign (VMS) system helps deliver real-time information to drivers on the road or highway. Majorly, these strategically-placed boards intimate road users about speed limit, traffic flow or congestions, diversions, road closures or alternative routes, hazardous situations, work ahead, in-coming traffic situation, weather condition, date, time, temperature and the availability of public transport.
- Monitoring through closed circuit TV (CCTV) cameras is the most preferred way for the surveillance of a highway/road section. CCTV cameras with pan, tilt and zoom features are placed at a suitable height for highway surveillance. Also, this feed enables CCR to integrate with video analytics software for the detection of an emergency.
- Visibilities sensors help improve highway safety by providing immediate and accurate information about the weather and visibility conditions. Certainly, these offer huge assistance to drivers.
- A video incident detection system (VIDS) assists infrastructure controllers to detect and solve problems in the network thereby increasing the safety level for drivers.
- In order to ensure road safety, speed enforcement cameras with video analytics and radars are used to accurately determine the speed of the over speeding vehicle along with its number plate.