loss of life and limbs cannot be the price of mobility
Government of India is observing National Road Safety Month from 18 January to 17 February 2021 as road accidents are essentially avoidable, and so is the economic hardship and emotional trauma faced by the survivors and their families. Indian government also recognizes that "there is an urgent need to make our roads safer as the loss of lives and limbs cannot be accepted as the price of mobility."
despite road-safety efforts, why are roads becoming unsafer?
Governments of 194 countries had declared the entire decade of 2011-2020 as Decade of Action for Road Safety and despite of tall promises of SDGs to halve deaths due to road accidents, the loss of lives has only increased.
An advertisement from Indian state of Uttar Pradesh says that 400 people die of road accidents every day. But it also identifies that main problem is lack of awareness of road traffic rules.
There is no doubt that everyone must follow all the road traffic rules. But this alone is not going to make roads safer for everyone, especially those who commute by non-motorised vehicles or walk.
Majority of road traffic accidents happen due to over-speeding, and those who get injured or die are not just the ones who use motorised vehicles. Cyclists, cycle rickshaws, e-rickshaws, pedestrians, roadside vendors, homeless people, also get injured, disabled or die in road accidents. Everyone needs safer roads. Roads belong to every person, and not just to very tiny minority of those who have cars or use motorised vehicles for commuting.
The goal is NOT to make roads safer ONLY for those who use motorized vehicles. The goal is to make roads safer for EVERYONE.
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