Kin of road crash victims on Sunday presented a charter of demands on road safety to the transport department officials on the occasion of Day of Remembrance for World Traffic Victims (WoDR) at the Regional Transport Office (RTO) Tardeo. The charter of demands includes strict enforcement of traffic laws particularly helmets, dedicated paths for cycles and pedestrians and improvement of road parameters to effectively bring down road mishaps.

The third Sunday of November is observed as the World Day of Remembrance for World Traffic Victims (WoDR) to commemorate the millions of people injured or killed in road crashes worldwide and the families and friends who have been affected. Pune-based NGO Parisar along with United Way Mumbai in collaboration with the Maharashtra transport department has also organized a silent march on Sunday morning near RTO Tardeo to highlight road safety issues.

Pune based NGO Parisar along with United Way Mumbai in collaboration with the Maharashtra transport department organised a silent march on Sunday near RTO Tardeo

Family members of road crash victims spoke up about the impact of road crashes on their personal, family, social and financial life and shared their plight and urged enforcement agencies to strengthen road safety measures to reduce trauma and suffering arising out of road fatalities. The Road Accidents in India report published by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways recently saw Maharashtra becoming the state with the second highest number of road mishap fatalities.

Satyawan Sonawane, who lost his sister and nephew in a span of a year, claimed it was the faulty road design which led to the crash of his dear sister. “My young nephew who met with the crash was not wearing a helmet. I think it is the need of the hour that all departments concerned must work in tandem to reduce road fatalities,” he said.

Alka Gaikwad, who lost her young son who was not wearing a helmet, was inconsolable. “No family should experience the pain of losing a dear one to a road mishap. I earnestly appeal to the law enforcement agencies to enforce the use of helmet rule to save lives,” she said.

Road crash victims then presented a charter of demands to Maharashtra’s additional transport commissioner Jitendra Patil urging departments concerned to focus on risk factors such as speeding, seat-belt, helmet and drink and drive to ensure road safety. Patil, who is also the head of the State Road Safety Cell, said that enforcement was an ongoing process and “each and every buyer of two-wheeler in Maharashtra is legally liable to get a helmet.”

The charter of demands

>> To curb speeding and strict enforcement

>> Take precautions for the safety of pedestrians and cyclists in the city. Construct pedestrian-friendly footpaths, construct safe junctions and create separate cycle paths.

>> Pedestrians and cyclists also have equal rights on the roads and should be able to use the roads easily.

>> The helmet regulation law should be strictly implemented. Vehicle dealers should be forced to follow the rule of giving two helmets to the drivers while buying two-wheelers and public awareness should be created about this rule.

>> Design and construction of roads and intersections should be done in accordance with the guiding philosophy of Indian Road Congress (IRC) in such a way that the number of mishaps is reduced.

>> Care should be taken during the licensing process to ensure drivers at least know the basics and the minimum driving rules.

>> Coordination between various agencies to create a fool-proof and crash safe system for road vehicles.

What is World Day of Remembrance

Commenced in 1995 and adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2005, WoDR is now commemorated globally by road victims 
Objectives of the World Day of Remembrance:

>> Remember all people killed and seriously injured on the roads.

>> Acknowledge the work of emergency services.

>> Draw attention to the legal response to culpable road deaths and injuries.

>> Advocate for better support for road victims.

>> Promote evidence-based actions to prevent and stop road accidents.

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