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2 Jan, 2013

One Death Every Four Minutes on Indian Roads


New Delhi (Press Information Bureau) – The 24th road safety week from 1st January to 7th January 2013, will be under the theme “Stay Alive, don’t drink and drive”.  The valedictory function of 24th Road Safety Week will be held on 7th January 2013 at Vigyan Bhawan, New Delhi.

“Road Safety Week” is observed all over the country in the month of January every year in order to spread road safety awareness. It aims to give everyone an opportunity to promote road safety in their community, school, work place and on the roads in general.

Road safety requires a multi pronged endeavour from various stakeholders like the transport sector, highway engineers, police, health sector, insurance sector, automobile manufacturers, legal sector, civic agencies, educational institutions, NGOs and the community at large. It is felt that collective effort would make a significant impact on the incidence of road accidents and help mitigate the scourge of road accident related deaths and injuries. Dr. CP Joshi, the Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways (RT&H) has appealed to all stake holders to join hands with the Government in its effort to make roads safer and to develop a sustainable road transport system across the country.

The number of persons killed in road accidents in India is the highest in the world. In 2011, over 1.42 lakh people have been killed in about 4.9 lakh road accidents reported so far. These numbers translate into roughly one road accident per minute and one road accident death every four minutes for India. Of these 24,655 road accidents were caused due to drunken driving resulting in 10,553 deaths and 21,148 injuries.

The scourge of drunken driving needs to be eliminated by spreading awareness and through stringent enforcement measures. The state governments have also been requested to ensure removal of liquor shops from the vicinity of Highways.

Children and youth are among the most vulnerable on the roads. The age group (15-24 years) accounted for 30.3 per cent of total road accident casualties during the year 2011. It is the Ministry’s endeavour to make road safety a social movement in partnership with schools and Universities. Educational institutions can play a very important role in promoting road safety. They can organize road safety activities at school and colleges and create opportunities for students to engage in road safety programmes.