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Govt promotes road safety through policy & awareness campaigns
By TOG News Service
Mar 13, 2018

TOG News Service, NEW DELHI, MAR 13, 2018: IN a bid to stem the rising number of cases of road accidents and fatalities, the Union Ministry for Road Transport & Highways took a number of steps to prevent the same. The measures include creating a road safety policy, re-designing accident prone roadways, improving training facilities for new drivers and also spreading awareness to follow traffic rules and providing better roads and highways.

For starters, the Government approved a National Road Safety Policy, which outlines various policy measures such as promoting awareness, establishing road safety information data base, encouraging safer road infrastructure including application of intelligent transport and enforcement of safety laws. Further in this regard, the Government also set up the National Road Safety Council as the apex body to take policy decisions in matters of road safety.  Moreover, a group of ministers had also been set up to examine the best transport practices and suggest measures to improve road safety. Such committee comprises of State Government transport ministers. Based upon their recommendation, the Union Ministry for Road Transport & Highways also introduced the Motor Vehicle (Amendment) Bill 2017, encompassing several measures for road safety. Notably, such Bill seeks to create a Motor Vehicle Accident Fund, implement the Cash less Treatment Scheme during Golden Hour, set up a dedicated agency for road safety i.e., the National Road Safety and Traffic Management Board (NRSTMB), and enhance penalty for traffic rule violations.

Besides this, the Ministry has also formulated a multi-pronged strategy to address the issue of road safety based on education, engineering (both of roads and vehicles), enforcement and emergency care. In this regard, road safety has been made an integral part of road design at planning stage. Road Safety Audit of selected stretches of National Highways has been taken up. Further, the threshold for four laning of national highway has been reduced from 15,000 Passenger Car Units to 10,000 PCUs. Moreover, about 52,000 Km of stretches of State Highways has been identified for conversion to national highways.